By Xinming Li, bostonese.com
Cambridge, Mass. April 23, 2017, — The 20th Harvard China Forum came to an close this after at Charles Hotel in Harvard Square. The 2-day forum drew around 1,000 attendees this year, and is the largest China focused conference in North America.
Lei Jun, CEO of Xiaomi, speaks at Harvard China Forum (photo by bostonese.com).
Out of many successfully entrepreneurs from China who attended this year’s forum, few had as dramatic impact as Mr. Lei Jun on China’s mobile Internet market. Within seven short year, Lei built the leading smart phone company Xiaomi, which is expected to generate $15 billion in sales in 2017.
“Over the past 350 weeks, we have had a new release every week. This is very hard for a hardware company,” Lei spoke about agile development at Xiaomi at the welcome ceremony of Harvard China Forum in the evening of April 21.
Lei’s visit to Cambridge was just a couple days after Xiammi launched the Mi6, with Qualcomm Snapdragon 835, on April 19. Xiaomi Mi6 with Qualcomm Snapdragon’s latest processor debuts at about half the cost of Samsung’s flagship S8, also with Snapdragon 835. Open source development and efficiency are the key reasons that Xiaomi has found success since it’s first product was released in 2011.
Lei mentioned that Xiaomi’s model is not modeled after Apple, which developed its own proprietary iOS for iPhone. Xiaomi actively adopts source code and design ideas from its users with its open source development model. “We would rather model after Costco to deliver deliver quality products with low prices,” said Lei.
Mr. Lei Jun is a renowned Chinese technology entrepreneur and angel investor. He founded Xiaomi Corporation in 2010, assuming the position of Chairman and CEO. He is also Chairman and co-founder of Kingsoft Corporation, which successfully went public in 2007. He also founded Joyo.com, which was sold to Amazon in 2004. In 2011, Mr. Lei founded Shunwei Ventures and is currently its Founding Partner and Chairman. Shunwei focuses on mobile internet, IOT and rural internet investment opportunities. As an angel investor, Mr. Lei has helped build over 20 companies such as Duowan (YY), UCweb, and Lakala etc., of which YY was listed on NASDAQ at the end of 2012.
Mr.Lei has succinctly summarized his Internet way of thinking into “Focus, Perfection, Speed and Word of Mouth”. Equipped with this powerful philosophy, Xiaomi led by Mr. Lei is disrupting and reshaping a lot of industries, including smartphones, set top boxes, televisions, and routers. At the same time, he has invested in many Xiaomi ecosystem companies in an effort to promote and drive the New “Made In China” movement.