Caixin
Apr 18, 2019 06:48 PM
BUSINESS & TECH

Exclusive: BlackBerry-Phone Maker’s Boss Tells How He Won Over Reluctant Shareholders

The maker of BlackBerry and Alcatel smartphones has just finished a major asset reshuffle, as it tries to breathe new life into former big names and boost its own fading fortunes. TCL Group is one of the biggest consumer electronics makers you’ve never heard of, with status as one of the world’s top TV-makers and also producer of Alcatel and BlackBerry smartphones under licensing agreements. It’s also a major producer of cutting-edge displays that are a central component to everything from smartphones to big-screen TVs.

After two previous failures, stockholders finally approved a major reorganization plan at TCL’s general meeting in early January. After spinning off most of its consumer products businesses, the Shenzhen-listed TCL Corp. transformed itself from a hybrid company whose product lines included smartphones, household appliances and display panels to one purely focused on display panels and accompanying microchips, a change that will likely increase TCL’s valuation.

In this exclusive interview, the founder and chairman of TCL shared with Caixin why the business has to be spun off, and what he thinks about the company’s prospects in smartphones and its international strategies.

Contact translator Isabelle Li (liyi@caixin.com)

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