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Xiaomi the money? OK, here's a one beeeeellion dollar loss ahead of IPO

There's more to them than phones. Like, er, scooters!

Chinese tech darling Xiaomi made a loss of $1.2bn (¥7.7bn) on turnover of $5.4bn (¥34.4bn) in the first quarter of 2018.

The firm disclosed the figures in a regulatory filing (Chinese, PDF) ahead of a share flotation. The IPO could raise $10bn and Xiaomi wants to use it to expand into the West.

The bulk of Xiaomi's income is made on smartphones in rapidly expanding markets in Asia, but until recently has stayed out of Europe, making its debut in Spain in November. The business has yet to plan an assault on the big economies of Germany, the UK and France.

Xiaomi has promised to maintain its model of making only razor-thin sub-5 per cent margins on hardware, which in turn could be good for consumers. But getting the sales channels on board is crucial, CCS Insight’s Ben Wood told us recently, when we analysed the reality behind the hype.

Bloomberg noted Xiaomi's claim that 31.8 per cent of its revenue in Q1 2018 came from scooters, air purifiers and online services.

It clearly doesn't want you to think it's a budget phone company. But really, it is. ®

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