Thames Valley’s reputation as the Silicon Valley of the UK on attracting global technology companies has been enhanced by the arrival of a special newcomer. ZTE, which is a leader in global telecommunication sector, has chosen Berkshire as the new location for its British HQ.
ZTE (UK) Ltd officially opens its office in central Slough this month (June 2015), after a long search for a HQ location in the UK.
With its global HQ based in Shenzhen, Guangdong Province of China, ZTE Corporation is a €8 bn turnover manufacturer and supplier of telecommunications equipment. The Company operates its businesses in comprehensive ranges of operator network, terminals, as well as telecommunications software, services and other products.
According to the Digital Trend in 2013, ZTE is the 3rd most popular smart phone provider in the USA beating a whole host of household names.
The multinational leader of R&D in the world’s telecommunication sector ranked 3rd in numbers of global patents filed in 2012 and 2013. ZTE sees great potential in the UK and has big ambitions to repeat its successes in the UK following those in many markets like the USA, Germany, France and Spain.
Relocating the UK headquarter to the heart of UK’s international technology hub in Thames Valley is a key strategic decision. After careful consideration of various sites recommended and facilitated by BCC LinkToChina Programme and its partners, ZTE (UK) has finally made the move. Mr Tony Chen, Managing Director of ZTE (UK) Ltd, says “we are a multinational company with operations in over 100 countries in the world. Therefore it is extremely important for our head office to be in location well connected with other global brands in our sectors and our UK telecom clients. We are very pleased with the Thames Valley region.”
BCC LinkToChina is based in Thames Valley Chamber of Commerce and has been working with Slough Borough Council, Bracknell Forest Council, Segro (Slough Trading Estate), Oxford Properties (Green Park, Reading), Wilkins Kennedy and Blake Morgan in China. The programme operates a trusted business partnership support package and business match-making platform for British companies and Chinese companies to identify market opportunities and set up business cooperation. Its support ‘helped ZTE in every step of its relocating preparation and couldn’t have been more welcoming in making the move possible’, according to Tony Chen.
Chinese investors, in particular technologies companies, have become more active in their global expansion and have targeted the UK as a key destination. Many of them are from the Chinese Capital of Trade, the Guangdong Province, which has many cities of major technology industrial hubs such as Shenzhen. BCC LinkToChina and its partners have run their annual China marketing campaign to Guangdong and many of its 21 prefecture cities and have established a strong partnership with the authorities, trade bodies and businesses in the Guangdong.
Many of the Guangdong companies, such as ZTE, Huawei Technologies, Hytera and TPLink have chosen the western London – Thames Valley region as their UK HQ locations to gain better access to the hub of global technology companies in the UK.
Dr Kegang Wu, Chief Representative of the Guangdong Economic and Trade Office in the UK, said “I am pleased to see yet another Guangdong company finding an ideal location for their UK HQ. I was involved with BCC LinkToChina and its partners who played an instrumental role in helping ZTE and other Guangdong companies in their effort to invest in the UK”. “ With more Chinese companies interested in investing in the UK and better policy support from Guangdong such as the recent Free Trade Zones, I am confident that success of ZTE (UK) in doing business here will serve as flagship for others to follow.”
Ruth Bagley, chief executive of Slough Borough Council, who has visited China with the LinkToChina programme twice since 2013, said: “Very few towns in the UK are as connected as Slough is to London, the rest of the country and the world.
“That, coupled with the massive regeneration and infrastructure projects underway, makes Slough an ideal destination for any company wanting to grow their global business.
“We have great pleasure in welcoming ZTE to Slough and look forward to working closely with them once they’ve settled in.”
Councillor Sohail Munawar, commissioner for social and economic inclusion, said: “We’ve put in a lot of effort, through our work with LinkToChina, to promote Slough on the world stage and highlight the many opportunities on offer for businesses.
“It seems our efforts are paying off, with the relocation of Hytera last year and now ZTE.
“This is fantastic news for the borough as a whole and in particular the town centre, which will benefit from the added vibrancy a fresh new company will bring.”
The trade and investment partnership between the UK and China is poised to enter a new golden era this year at the back of rapid increase of UK export to China and Chinese investment to the UK in the last few years. As announced in the Queen’s speech last month, the President of China, Mr Xi Jinping, will visit the UK in October for his first state visit to the UK.
For further information, please contact BCC LinkToChina on 01753 870 571 www.linktochina.org