Chinese telecom giant Huawei has recently exited the American market amid (dubious, but concerning) fears that the company’s ties to the Chinese government could allow for espionage in the United States. A continuous criticism of the company focused on People’s Liberation Army member turned-CEO Ren Zhengfei, whose lack of public transparency was seen as unwelcoming and mysterious.
Now, however, Ren has decided to open up and give some interviews with the press, and jesus christ, one now understands why his PR team wanted to keep him the hell away from prodding interviewers. A personal favorite is this interview with ZDNet, in which Ren confesses that being a pig farmer would probably be pretty sweet and save him a lot of headaches. The good parts go as follows:
Why did you embark into the telecommunications industry?
“If I were a fruit seller, you’d probably also ask why I was selling fruit. Perhaps if I were smarter and had not entered the telecoms industry, I might have had a more meaningful life. For example, if I had gone instead to rear pigs, I might by now already be China’s most successful pig farmer. Not only are pigs very obedient, the industry also progresses at a slow pace. That’s compared with the telecoms industry which moves so fast that I’m too tired to keep pace with developments now.
With Huawei facing government hurdles in some countries, do the Chinese and U.S. bring up the company during bilateral discussions?
“Our company is an insignificant company. Our sales in the United States is about US$10 billion, compared with China’s exports which is worth a few trillion dollars. The Chinese government is more concerned about what affects that bigger number, and employment issues at home. We are a private enterprise without any high-level political position.”
There is full interview has a handful of additional questions, but that excerpt shows the gist of it: Huawei CEO runs an insignificant company and would love to have a farm of slow, obedient pigs. PR at its finest.
[Image via Xinhua]