Chinese equipment vendor Huawei has struck a deal Etisalat to provide the Middle Eastern-based mobile group with vendor financing. The two companies announced yesterday they have signed a Global Framework Agreement (GFA) and Financing Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to further support Etisalat’s expansion plans. In a statement, Etisalat said that the finance MoU would see Huawei provide it with an “optimal financing solution,” while the GFA will help Etisalat and Huawei improve their business efficiency. The two firms also announced plans to build an Application Innovation Center (AIC), which aims to “increase the operator’s competitiveness and sustain its business growth by introducing more customised solutions and applications.”
Huawei has embraced vendor financing as a key way of sustaining growth admid the global economic downturn and a contracting telecoms equipment market. Huawei has used financing to strengthen its standing with Western mobile operators. The vendor told the Financial Times earlier this year that it is targeting deals worth US$30 billion in 2009, up from US$23 billion worth of signed contracts in 2008. Rival Chinese vendor ZTE is persuing a similar strategy and has this year secured financing arrangements with a number of Chinese banks.