Richard Liu is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of JD.com, one of the largest e-commerce platforms in China. Since its establishment, JD.com has experienced a rapid growth to become a leading online retailer in China and beyond. JD.com is now worth $57.6 billion, with Liu reportedly having a net worth of $11 billion according to Forbes.
Richard Liu is a self-made business person. He graduated with a degree in sociology from the Renmin University of China in 1996. However, he spent the majority of his time learning and studying computer codes and honing his computer skills. He then joined the China Europe International Business School, where he earned an E.M.B.A. After graduation, he was hired by Japan Life where he worked as a director of computers and director of business during his two-year tenure.
An interview called “An Insight, An Idea”, weforum.org sat down with Richard Liu to discuss his career and how he has transformed the retail industry.
In 1998, Richard Liu ventured out on his own and started selling magneto-optical products. He named the business “Jindong”. The business initially progressed well, expanding up to an impressive 12 stores across China. According to Richard Liu, he was motivated to start his business to raise money to support himself and his poor family, especially his sickly grandmother. Unfortunately, the SARS epidemic threatened his stores, after all the staff and clients opted to stay indoors. The experience forced Richard Liu to rethink his business model and reinvent its future.
In 2004, Richard Liu Qiangdong moved from his brick and mortar stores and created JD.com, where he started selling electronics alongside other products through the website. By 2005, he had completely moved online, and his journey to become one of the largest trading platforms in China was well on its way. Richard Liu realized that online sales were cost-effective and involved fewer logistics. Additionally, it was more efficient for the customers, and with that, e-commerce became his new passion. Refer to This Article for related information.
The success of JD.com can be attributed to the business’s ability to sell genuine products and produce receipts for clients. The business changed the consumer’s experience by expanding its online store from IT products only, to digital products, mobile phones, and consequently, almost everything by 2010. The company now has a market value of $60 billion and employs around 167,000 people.