updated 02:23 pm EST, Mon December 10, 2012
Five-year investment will hire 100 staff, work on UI
Huawei intends to spend 70 million euro ($93 million) on a new research and development facility in Finland. The new location in Helsinki, Finland's capital city, is roughly 13 miles away from Nokia's headquarters in Espoo, will initially employ 30 staff and will swell to 100 over a five year period, and will bring the company's global R&D staff to over 70,000.
The new center will join Huawei's other European R&D teams, including a modern and technology design center in Sweden, and a user interface research center in the UK. The Finnish team will be working on "new technologies for mobile devices," according to a company statement, with the focus on optimizing the user experience of Windows Phone 8 and Android for mobile devices.
The expansion to Finland comes at a time when Nokia is shedding staff in order to save costs, and is losing its market share almost as fast as its cash stockpile depletes. Though Huawei will not be able to take on all employees let go from Nokia, it will certainly take advantage of the newly available and highly-skilled workforce available to it, if not at the new research center then at one of the 10 other locations across the market.
The European expansion takes place two months after the company was accused of being a security risk by the US House of Representatives Intelligence Committee. According to Reuters, Huawei has also signed a services deal with mobile phone network 3 UK, though exact details of the agreement were not disclosed.