In a bid to strengthen its relationships with vendors in China, Qualcomm has launched a dedicated unit that will assist local smartphone manufacturers sell their handsets abroad.
CEO of Qualcomm Steve Mollenkopf revealed to the Wall Street Journal that after the antitrust investigation and the $975 million fine — which resulted in Qualcomm reducing the amount of royalties it collects from Chinese vendors — "more customers in China have shown willingness to sign licensing agreements."
Jeff Lorbeck, senior vice president of Qualcomm China, stated that an office was set up in Shenzhen earlier this year which will provide Chinese smartphone makers the ability to "connect with overseas markets:"
One of the things we are doing that is new is a significant refocusing of our efforts on supporting our Chinese customers to export out of China.
While vendors like Huawei and Xiaomi are already established at a global level, the move will aid up-and-coming manufacturers looking to attract a wider audience. Qualcomm is also setting aside $150 million for investing in Chinese startups, and has recently signed a deal with local foundries to produce chips for its low-cost SoCs. By giving a platform for local vendors to sell their Snapdragon-toting handsets at a global level, Qualcomm stands to regain some of the profits it lost following the loss of Samsung as a customer for its flagship SoC this year.