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Huawei Pivots to Fish Farms, Mining After U.S. Blocks Its Phones

  • Firm searching for growth boosters outside Washington’s reach
  • Diving smartphone business fueling urgent need to diversify

Photographer: Patricia de Melo Moreira/AFP/Getty Images

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Six months after the Trump administration dealt a crushing blow to Huawei Technologies Co.’s smartphone business, the Chinese telecommunications giant is turning to less glamorous alternatives that may eventually offset the decline of its biggest revenue contributor.

Among its newest customers is a fish farm in eastern China that’s twice the size of New York’s Central Park. The farm is covered with tens of thousands of solar panels outfitted with Huawei’s inverters to shield its fish from excessive sunlight while generating power. About 370 miles to the west in coal-rich Shanxi province, wireless sensors and cameras deep beneath the earth monitor oxygen levels and potential machine malfunctions in mine pit -- all supplied by the tech titan. And next month, a shiny new electric car featuring its lidar sensor will debut at China’s largest auto show.