LG has gained a useful advantage over rival manufacturer Samsung in the battle to become South Korea’s largest handset maker, after China granted the company exclusive rights to provide 3G handsets for the nation’s carriers.
Under the terms of the agreement, LG will be the sole international manufacturer to provide mobile phones for China Mobile, China Telecom and China Unicom.
Between them these three operators boast over 600 million customers, thus opening a potentially huge market for LG.
Prior the deal being struck, LG has struggled to make an impact in the Chinese handset sector, where its market share of 3.8 per cent puts it well below other international phone brands.
Figures for the first quarter of 2009 showed that Nokia is the market leader with 32 per cent, while LG’s domestic competitor Samsung boasts a share of 18 per cent.
However, in Europe LG has been one of the handset success stories of recent years thanks to popularity of touchscreen mobile phones such as the LG KP500 Cookie and the LG KM900 Arena, which has proved a particular hit with fans of pink mobile phones.