Huawei Technologies remained the country’s largest private-sector R&D spender, with a budget of RMB 142.7 billion ($20.5 billion), however, it lost the No. 1 spot in revenue terms after a six-year reign amid US trade sanctions and a depressed market due to a lack of consumer appetite for always upgrading to the latest smartphone, reports the South China Morning Post. China’s private-sector enterprises increased their R&D expenditures last year despite muted growth amid a souring economy and geopolitical headwinds, according to the latest Top 500 China Private Enterprise ranking.
E-commerce giant JD.com topped the list for the first time with RMB 951.6 billion in revenue, followed by this newspaper’s owner Alibaba Group Holding, and textile maker Hengli Group.
“The overall size of the Chinese top 500 private enterprises is increasing,” said Huang Rong, vice-chairman of the All-China Federation of Industry and Commerce (ACFIC), the non-government business group that published the list, which excludes state-owned enterprises. “Tax contributions grew modestly and they are ramping up innovation and branding investments.”