The agency will lead consumer and corporate PR for the world’s fourth largest smartphone maker, following a pitch first reported by PRWeek, as it seeks to grow its market share.
The Chinese firm is gunning for third position in the global smartphone market within the next three years against fierce competition from brands such as HTC, Huawei, BlackBerry and Nokia.
The brand's fourth position has been fuelled by its popularity in its home market of China, but the new PR drive signals its increasing focus on the largely untapped Western market.
Key markets for European growth are the UK, France and Germany, as well as the Nordic region, which will be served by Hotwire affiliate Northern Link.
Hotwire’s remit will include developing a comms strategy for the brand across Western Europe, covering media relations, influencer engagement and launch events.
ZTE European brand and marcoms director Sheila Wang commented: ‘Hotwire’s recommendations, creative focus and deep-level strategic thinking at pitch stage strongly stood out and were highly encouraging, beating out the competition.
‘The agency’s wealth of experience and expertise in both the mobile and consumer spaces, coupled with the ability to craft truly integrated and creative campaigns, made the agency stand out.’
Hotwire CEO Brendon Craigie said the agency’s innovative and creative approach would help fulfil ZTE’s business goals.
Incumbent Axicom will continue to handle b2b PR duties.