"The worst is over," Lei said at the company's annual meeting in Beijing on Thursday, describing 2016 as a "make-up year" during which time it slowed its growth to make essential adjustments to its business.
The seven-year-old company, which was briefly the world's most valuable start-up and hoped to become China's equivalent of Apple Inc, fell out of the top three ranking in China for smartphone vendors in 2016, after occupying the No. 2 spot in 2015.
Privately held Xiaomi did not disclose 2016 sales.
($1 = 6.9102 Chinese yuan renminbi)
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