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There's a lot of similarity between Shenzhen, the south China city where Huawei is based, and Silicon Valley in its early days, says 35-year tech veteran Ron Raffensperger. "Everybody's from somewhere else, which is pretty much what Silicon Valley was," notes Raffensperger, Huawei's chief technology officer for IT solutions. "It's all young people, tons of young people — it's just the same."
Like its West Coast counterparts, Huawei is hungry for success. Set up in 1987, it is now second only to Ericsson worldwide as a telecoms gear provider, and claims fifth place in mobile devices — though it is aiming to reach third place within five years. It's also said it wants to triple its annual revenue to $100bn within nine years.
The Chinese tech giant's youthful staff plays a key part in its efforts to fulfill its ambitious plans, and it recruits from all over the country. ZDNet took a look around its Shenzhen headquarters and its manufacturing facility in Songshan Lake to get an idea of what they can expect to find when they turn up for work.
Image: Karen Friar