One of Huawei's top execs thinks acquiring Nokia could help the Chinese company raise its profile in smartphones.
"We are considering these sorts of acquisitions; maybe the combination has some synergies but depends on the willingness of Nokia. We are open-minded," Richard Yu, CEO of Huawei's consumer unit, told the Financial Times’s Daniel Thomas.
Nokia shares briefly jumped nearly 12 percent Tuesday after the report.
A Huawei spokesperson declined further comment, saying only that "Huawei has no plans to acquire Nokia."
We've reached out to Nokia and will update if the company responds.
But to be clear, it sounds like Yu was just speculating and wasn't talking about a specific deal that's in the works.
Huawei is the world's biggest selling of telecom equipment but has a much smaller mobile business. It was the world's fourth-largest smartphone vendor in Q1 with 4.6 percent market share, according to IDC.
But Huawei's mobile business is on the rise: Its smartphone shipments grew 94 percent compared to last year's quarter, compared to 60.7 percent for number one Samsung, IDC said.
Only LG, whose shipments grew 110 percent during the quarter, is growing faster.
Huawei has been selling inexpensive phones in China for years. The company launched its Ascend P6 smartphone at a glitzy launch event Tuesday in London, billing it as "the world's slimmest."
Here's a promo video for the Ascend P6:
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