ZTE has continued its efforts to return to the US by announcing a complete overhaul of its board.
According to Reuters, the new chairman is Li Zixue, with Gu Junying also elected as executive directors. Li Buqing, Zhu Weimin and Fang Rong are non-executive directors. The rest were independent non-executive directors, including Cai Manli, Yuming Bao and Gordon Ng.
However, not everyone agrees with the new lineup.
“I am most interested to see how well the new board will manage the company, as well as their technical expertise in telecoms. I don’t know how experienced they are in both these respects,” said a ZTE employee, who declined to be named due to the sensitivity of the issue.
The new chairman in 54 years old and was the Communist Party secretary at a unit of China Aerospace Science and Technology Corporation.
ZTE was brought down to its knees and almost shut down, after the US banned its companies from doing business with them. The ban was put in place after the discovery that ZTE was shipping its products, containing US-built parts, to countries under US embargo – North Korea and Iran.
In order to have the ban lifted, ZTE needed to pay $1bn in fines, and drop another $400 million in escrow, just in case they repeat the offense. They also needed to completely change their board of directors. There was also talk of China needing to import more US agricultural producs, but it's unclear if that remained part of the deal.
Image Credit: Flickr / Kārlis Dambrāns