Alibaba Group has decided to invest US$590 million into Chinese smartphone maker Meizu, the two companies announced today. Another US$60 million in funding came from Haitong Kaiyuan Investment. It’s only six months since Meizu announced its first outside investment.

Meizu was one of the first smartphone brands in China. Since launching its first Android phone in 2009, Meizu has received plaudits for its customized Android system and finely designed hardware from both the smartphone industry and consumers.

Although Xiaomi began making Android phones several years later, it is now far more successful in branding and sales. Huang Zhang (aka Jhon Wang), founder of Meizu, accused Xiaomi of stealing their business secrets as Xiaomi’s CEO Lei Jun had once visited Meizu as a potential investor. Xiaomi’s approach to software development, hardware design and user engagement strategies in its early days was remarkably similar.

Start your free trial now.

Get instant access to all our premium content, archives, newsletters, and online community.

Monthly Membership

Yearly Membership

What you get

Full access to all premium content and our full archives

Members'-only newsletters

Preferential access and discounts to all TechNode events

Direct access to the TechNode newsroom

Start your free trial now.

Get instant access to all our premium content, archives, newsletters, and online community.

Monthly Membership

Yearly Membership

Tracey Xiang

Tracey Xiang is Beijing, China-based tech writer. Reach her at traceyxiang@gmail.com