After a turbulent year in China, Apple supplier Foxconn has named Michael Chiang as the new head of its iPhone assembly business, Bloomberg News reported on Tuesday, citing people familiar with the matter.
According to Bloomberg, Chiang will take over the iPhone assembly division from longstanding CEO Wang Charng-yang.
Bloomberg said Chiang's promotion is part of Foxconn Chairman Young Liu's efforts to elevate younger executives in order to maintain the company's supply chain leadership in the face of increased competition from Chinese rivals.
A COVID-19 breakout and measures taken to suppress the virus forced hundreds of workers to quit Foxconn's plant in China's Zhengzhou city, which is the largest facility in the world for manufacturing iPhones for Apple Inc.
A wave of employee dissatisfaction over payment concerns also had an impact.
Employees in China have protested about sharing dorms with coworkers who tested positive for COVID, in a rare instance of open criticism. Workers allege they were misled about compensatory payments at the facility, which produces 70% of the world's iPhones.
Videos shared on Chinese social media showed throngs and extended lines of workers waiting for buses while carrying a lot of stuff.
Foxconn in November offered protesting recruits 10,000 yuan ($1,400) in exchange for their resignation and departure from the factory.
In response to employee complaints that a pay-related "technical error" during hiring contributed to protests involving physical altercations with security officials, the company issued an apology.
Sources told Reuters earlier this month that the plant was nearly back up and running, with December shipments surpassing roughly 90% of initial projections.
The disturbance at the Foxconn plant happened as China records a record number of COVID infections and deals with growing lockdowns, which have fueled civilian dissatisfaction across the country. It has also revealed communication issues and mistrust of Foxconn management among some employees.
Foxconn launched a hiring drive last year, promising incentives and increased pay after being forced to implement COVID restrictions in October. Because of the constraints, the corporation was compelled to isolate many of its employees, causing others to flee.
Earlier this month, the Financial Times newspaper reported that Apple was set to sign up Chinese contract manufacturer Luxshare Precision Industry Co Ltd to produce premium iPhone models, to make up for lost production at Foxconn's Zhengzhou factory last year.