Richard Liu Qiangdong: The Story Behind The Birth Of JD.com

Richard Liu, also known as Liu Qiangdong is a well-known business person across the world. He is celebrated for his oustanding role as the founder and Chief Executive Officer of JD.com, one of the largest retailers in the Chinese online retail industry.

As stated by a famous Chinese proverb that the most significant journey starts with one step, Richard Liu Qiangdong did not rise to business stardom in an overnight. The Jiangsu-born entrepreneur has undergone what appears to be a well-calculated step towards his business success.

Richard Liu enrolled in the highly regarded Renmin University of China, where he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Sociology. His first idea was to join politics, but he realized that politics could not be as much paying as a personal business. He then started working as freelance computer programmer. Little known to him, he mastered the adequate computer skills to start and operate a technologically advanced enterprise.

After a short while, Richard Liu Qiangdong decided to seek the necessary knowledge, which would enable him to manage a large business firm. He enrolled in the China Europe International Business School, where he attained an EMBA. Armed with the necessary computer programming and coding skills, Richard Liu then sought the required experience to run a business successfully.

Richard Liu signed up for an employment position with Japan Life, a company which sold medical supplements. Using his skills in computer programming and knowledge in business management, Liu quickly rose through the ranks to become the Director of Computers. Later, he served as the Director of Business.

After serving in Japan Life for two years, Richard Liu Qiangdong decided to venture out into business. With just a little capital, he set a small brick and mortar establishment in the Zhongguancun High-tech Industrial Park, Beijing. Within five years, his single store had multiplied to twelve other stores located in different places in Beijing.

However, the 2003 SARS outbreak in China led to the collapse of the business. The epidemic grounded all the clients and staff, who remained indoors for fear of catching the disease. In the wake of 2004, Richard Liu decided to close down all his physical stores and went entirely online. The decision to start online retailing led to the birth of JD.com in 2004.

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