ZTE Corporation

Industry sector: Telecommunications equipment

Headquarters: Shenzhen

Established as a Shenzhen state-owned enterprise in 1985, ZTE has evolved into a multinational juggernaut which has taken on the traditional telecoms hierarchy to claim a place among the global elite. It is also king of the patent application rankings: WIPO statistics reveal that it filed more PCT applications than any other company in the world in 2011. With such a potent patent war chest, ZTE is no stranger to the courtroom, and has been involved in several recent IP skirmishes with other leading players. One such dispute with Ericsson ended in a truce in January 2012, with both parties signing a global cross-licensing agreement.