It’s one of the greatest technology “startup” success stories of the personal computer and smartphone eras. Yet, despite selling 59 million smartphones and netting $27 billion in revenue last quarter in its first-ever public earnings report this morning, a strange and tantalizing question shrouds the world’s number two handset manufacturer behind Samsung.

Who owns Huawei?

To hear the company tell it, it’s 100% employee-owned. In a statement circulated last week, it said that “Huawei is a private company wholly owned by its employees. No government agency or outside organization holds shares in Huawei or has any control over Huawei.”

That’s a simple statement, but oh is it so much more complicated.

As with all things related to Huawei, which outside of its 5G archrival Qualcomm

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