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Huawei’s Troubles Are a Big Opportunity for Ericsson and Nokia

The Chinese supplier’s supremacy is being challenged by its Nordic rivals.

Preparations Ahead Of MWC Barcelona 2019
Photographer: Angel Garcia/Bloomberg
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Over the past two decades, China’s Huawei Technologies Co. has come to dominate the global telecom equipment market, winning contracts with a mix of sophisticated technology and attractive prices. Its rise squeezed Europe’s Nokia Oyj and Ericsson AB, which responded by cutting jobs and making acquisitions. Now, with Huawei at the center of a U.S.-China trade war, the tide is turning.

Nokia and Ericsson—fierce rivals themselves—have recently wrested notable long-term deals from Huawei to build 5G wireless networks, to enable everything from autonomous cars to robot surgery. Analysts say more could come their way as Huawei grapples with a U.S. export ban and restrictions from other governments concerned that its equipment could enable Chinese espionage.