Due to US sanctions, Huawei has reported its largest ever revenue drop

Huawei was placed on an export blacklist in 2019 by former US President Donald Trump, preventing it from accessing critical US technology and limiting its ability to design its own chips and source components from outside vendors.

After US sanctions forced it to sell a portion of its once-dominant handset business and before new growth areas had fully matured, Huawei Technologies reported its largest ever revenue drop in the first half of 2021.

The company generated revenue of CNY 320.4 billion ($49.56 billion), it said on Friday. The biggest decline came from Huawei's consumer business group, which includes handsets, where revenue fell 47 percent to CNY 135.7 billion ($20.92 billion).

According to consultancy Canalys, the sanctions hampered Huawei's handset business, with the company dropping out of China's top five vendors for the first time in more than seven years in the second quarter, shipping 6.4 million units.

That compares with 27.4 million handsets shipped in China in Q2 2020, excluding shipments of Honor budget handsets. Huawei sold the brand in November.

Huawei's telecoms equipment business also saw a 14 percent drop in revenue in the first half, which a spokesperson said was due in part to the slowing of China's 5G rollout.

Huawei is trying to pivot towards software and business areas not at risk of US pressure, according to an internal memo from founder and CEO Ren Zhengfei seen by Reuters in May.

"Our aim is to survive, and to do so sustainably," said Eric Xu, Huawei's rotating chairman, in a statement on the results. "We've set our strategic goals for the next five years."

US sanctions barred Google from providing technical support to new phone models.

In June, the company began rolling out its Harmony operating system, indicating that it is no longer entirely reliant on Google's Android platform.