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Is LG pulling out of China's smartphone market?

Amidst stiff competition from HUAWEI, OPPO, and others, LG has reportedly stepped away from China's smartphone market.

Published onFebruary 6, 2018

  • One report alleged that LG left China’s smartphone market.
  • Another report said LG reorganized its Chinese mobile division.
  • Regardless, it seems that LG’s smartphones are not selling well in China.

LG‘s mobile division continues to bleed money, but is the situation so dire that the company bowed out of China, one of the largest smartphone markets in the world? The answer according to one China Business reporter, is yes.

The reporter is said to have visited LG’s Beijing offices and received such information from a company representative. When pressed for further info, the representative cited an increase in competition from local brands.

Even though China’s smartphone market took a bit of a step back in 2017, competition in the region remains fierce. Huawei retained the top spot last year, while Oppo and Vivo remained in second and third, respectively. Apple pushed Xiaomi out of the fourth spot, though the latter held on to the fifth position.

LG last updated its Chinese website with 2016’s G5 SE, so there is at least some accumulated dust on the company’s Chinese smartphone business. Other reports, however, suggest isn’t pulling out of China entirely.

Is LG launching a new V30 variant at MWC 2018? (Update: LG official confirms)

An LG official told ETNews that the company’s Chinese subsidiary was reorganized as part of its Korean sales division. Apparently, LG still intends to sell 5G and foldable smartphones in China, but wants to find out why it has struggled in the country’s smartphone market. To that end, LG created a smaller operation in China to identify profitable products and improve the company’s brand image in the country.

Details are scarce about who runs this entity and how long it will exist, but it seems like LG will temporarily leave China while it figures out a smarter business strategy. Seeing how the company’s mobile division posted operating losses for an eleventh straight quarter, this could be the right move.

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