Richard Yu, chief executive of Huawei’s consumer business group, addresses the audience at the launch of the Huawei P9 smartphone in London in April. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES
Richard Yu, chief executive of Huawei’s consumer business group, addresses the audience at the launch of the Huawei P9 smartphone in London in April. PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE/GETTY IMAGES

Richard Yu, the Chief Executive of Huawei”s consumer business group, told The Wall Street Journal during an interview on Thursday, that the Chinese based tech firm aims to become the world’s second-largest smartphone maker by 2018.

“This year and next will be critical for the success, we are working very hard,” Mr. Yu said. When the company is number two is the time to predict when it will become number one, he added.

According to Gartner, Huawei is the world’s third-largest producer of smartphones with an 8.9% market share in the second quarter, well behind Samsung’s 22.3% and  Apple’s 12.9%.

Despite a flattening overall market, Huawei is targeting huge growth. The company plans to ship 140 million devices in 2016, a 30% increase over the past year. Mr. Yu said he is convinced Huawei can achieve this target.

According to WSJ, Mr. Yu said he also expects growth next year, but didn’t give specific numbers. Huawei has been particularly successful in its home market of China, where it faces competition from other local companies like Oppo and Vivo.

“The competition in China is a concern to me, but not a big one,” Mr. Yu said. “We have the latest technology, and this is what people want.”

In the U.S., Huawei is still a runner-up. “I have to admit, that our management in the U.S. was too weak in the past, so we changed it,” Mr. Yu said.

He doesn’t expect fast success, however, noting, “It will take time to build trust in the U.S.”