Liu Chuanzhi: More rush to live than live

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 Liu Chuanzhi: More rush to live than live


He said that 40 years of reform and opening up have experienced all kinds of setbacks. Today, the country is still facing all kinds of difficulties, but he still believes that the country will have a bright future as before.

The 40 years of reform and opening up are the 40 years that Liu Chuanzhi has realized his life value.

After the Third Plenary Session of the Eleventh Central Committee, Liu Chuanzhi went to sea with the spring of science and the tide of reform and opening up. But he did not expect that his choice of computer industry, let him and Lenovo Group stand at the forefront.

From the founding of Lenovo in 1984, to the positive competition with major foreign computer brands, to the worlds leading, Liu Chuanzhi also wrote a page of Lenovo itself in the big book of reform and opening up.

In recent years, Lenovo Holdings has made angel investment and venture capital to support young peoples entrepreneurship in the way of capital + experience.

He said that 40 years of reform and opening up have experienced all kinds of setbacks. Today, the country is still facing all kinds of difficulties, but he still believes that the country will have a bright future as before. (According to Xinhua News Agency)

Liu Chuanzhi, the pioneer of the industrialization of science and technology. New Beijing News reporter Guo Yanbing

40-year-old entrepreneurship, thanks to the environment at that time

Beijing News: On October 17, 1984, when the Institute of Computing of the Chinese Academy of Sciences agreed to start a company with you and several partners, do you remember what it was like?

Liu Chuanzhi: It should have been a glorious thing to work in the Academy of Sciences, but President Zhou Guangzhao specifically talked about how to turn our scientific research achievements into products. So at that time, the Academy of Sciences hoped that intellectuals and technicians could go to sea to run enterprises. Under this call, in November 1984, in the bungalow of the communication room, I set up enterprises.

Beijing News: You were 40 years old at that time. When you were starting a business, where do you think the opportunity is? What is the biggest confusion?

Liu Chuanzhi: I graduated from college in 1966, and then there was ten years of turbulence. During these ten years, I was very depressed. Young entrepreneurs nowadays may not realize what it feels like to hold back because they want to start a business now.

I have been studying magnetic recording circuits in the Academy of Sciences for 13 years. Although I have won several awards in succession, after that, I put it on the shelf and did not become a social value. Only in the end, in 1980, we made a dual-density tape recorder and sent it to an aircraft test flight research institute in Shaanxi Province for use. We were very happy, but at that moment, we began to contact with foreign things and found that what we did was far away from foreign countries.

In 1984, at the age of 40, I finally had the chance to work in the company. I wanted to try it out and see how good I was. Todays people will think, how can a 40-year-old start a business, but at that time, I really did not feel old. On the contrary, I think its just the right time to thank the environment.

We started with trade, and we need to live by trade and accumulate capital. And at that time, everyone did not know anything, what is the market, how to do marketing, will not at all, do not trade through, no matter how good scientific research products you do not know how to sell; do not make the manufacturing industry sophisticated, some characteristics of good scientific research products will be roughly covered up by the manufacturing industry. Only when we can do trade can we see the problems systematically and penetratingly.

Acting really doesnt make you anxious.

Beijing News: Lenovo first experienced a fraud. Can you tell me one or two of the most impressive stories? Can you describe the dilemma at that time and the subsequent decision-making, and how such a failure will help your later career development?

Liu Chuanzhi: In 1987, we were cheated by an import and export company in Shenzhen for 3 million yuan. At that time, this incident made me ill in a hurry, even patting his heart with bricks. We need to know how many people earned more than 1 million RMB in the whole year.

After the money was recovered, I was still woken up in the night and stayed in the naval hospital for three months before I was able to adjust.

Speaking of the plight, we worked in the company at that time. At that time, there were many local policies that could not keep up with the countrys path. For example, when we made Hanka, we received a ticket because the price was too high. At that time, the Price Bureau stipulated that the price must be increased by 20% over the cost. But what is the cost? The cost of hardware and labor wages for specific components is counted, but the cost of human intelligence is not counted at all. So he gave us a ticket, and the penalty was very heavy. At that time, some young colleagues suggested that a press conference should be held to tell the world about the fine. Later, I was determined not to do so. My experience at that time was that it was best for the leaders to know you. You did well, and that was my magic weapon to save my life.

Liu Chuanzhi who participated in the activity. Pictures from Visual China

New Beijing News: In the past 30 years, at which time did you find it most difficult and what sustained it? You once borrowed the words of an entrepreneur to describe the state of entrepreneurship - always trembling, always treading on thin ice. Do you think this is the anxiety every entrepreneur faces? How did you overcome it?

Liu Chuanzhi: Around 1993, I made a very serious mistake. Lenovo Group is listed in Hong Kong, China, and I put all my efforts on it. Actually, it shouldnt, because the significance of listing is not so great. In that year, the IT industry in China changed dramatically. When foreign brands came in, some local brands became difficult. In addition, there were fierce contradictions within us. At the same time, both sides of the battle made me live in the hospital. After getting better, I turned the hospital into a headquarters, and the whole strategy was to complete it in the hospital.

When I feel anxious, I meditate alone. Find out what worries you. This process of thinking is actually a very important process of self-improvement. When I worked in my early days, I always talked about what the company should do, what the current situation is and what we should do. Speaking to the outside world, it is a very important link for me to clarify my thinking. Its different to think clearly than to speak clearly. You have to figure out whats going on first, and then think about how to convince others.

Later, I found the rule: when I cant think clearly, I communicate, and then pull out a plan. Even if I dont think about doing it first, I dont do it right and I adjust it again, I really dont feel anxious when I act.

Investing in Enterprises, Solving Employment, Bringing Wealth to Society

Beijing News: In 2001, you split Lenovo Group into Lenovo Group and Shenzhou Digital Group in an unexpected way. At the same time, you entered the investment industry. As an entrepreneur who started the industry and transformed the investment industry, how do you see the relationship between capital and industry?

Liu Chuanzhi: Now the country emphasizes that the financial industry should do a good job of direct investment and support the real economy, which I think is very important, so the country should pay special attention to these investors who make direct investment, they can help entrepreneurs. In one of the most vivid examples I have witnessed is the development of Zhongguancun. Zhongguancun was really developed after 2000, and became a very dynamic innovation base, which was synchronized with the arrival of venture capital, angel investment and other investment institutions. Lenovo Holdings is also a venture capital formed in 2000, which also plays a certain role here. So how important is the power of capital when other conditions are available.

Lenovo Holdings has three financial investment funds, Junlian Capital, Hongyi Investment and Lenovo Star. They are in charge of nearly 130 billion RMB in total. There are more than 700 enterprises invested. Many of these enterprises have done very well, solved a lot of employment opportunities and brought wealth to the society. This fully demonstrates that investment enterprises are an important part of GDP formation, and because they have been invested from the early stage of enterprise development, seed stage, growth stage and development stage, they really play a great role in promoting the national economy.

Beijing News: The sculpture in your office is very famous. It used to be momentum-building. Why did it change to breakthrough sculpture?

Liu Chuanzhi: Boosting momentum is a cow, bowing its head and preparing to work hard. I think China has boosted momentum for so many years, and Lenovo is also booming. In 2015, after Lenovo Holdings went public, the statue of the office was replaced by a breakthrough, which is the image of people breaking through the walls. It symbolizes that after years of boosting momentum, we have begun to break through.

On June 29, 2015, Lenovo Holdings (3396.HK) was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. Pictures from Visual China

Without reform and opening up, many talented people will be buried.

Beijing News: Todays Internet, subversive events are likely to happen every day. How do you think the new entrepreneurs face different environments compared with the era when you started your business?

Liu Chuanzhi: People of our time had a deep feeling for the nation and the country, and wanted to do more. If it werent for reform and opening up, many talented people would be buried. We have caught up with the era of reform and opening up. We should do our best to work hard. I dont think there is any more alternative way.

Since the third generation, Chinese entrepreneurs have really changed their sources of capital. The first two generations mostly depend on their own accumulation. The third generation, with the rise of venture capital, people are bold and dare to advance.

Beijing News: What advice do you give young people?

Liu Chuanzhi: There are two kinds of people in the world: those who live and those who run. Its human nature for people to live comfortably and comfortably in their own homes, but people who rush to live have higher pursuits and goals. They work harder than those who live, but they are the main force of social development and progress. In this society, more people are needed.

The improvement of learning ability can turn intelligence into wisdom. Wisdom is nothing but diligent thinking. The progress of people and the improvement of learning ability, I think its just to go to school with books and see how others do. In practice, to learn from colleagues and friends, in fact, more is to learn in their own practice, and it is a very important link to connect with themselves.

If you reconsider what you have done, whether it is big or small, it will be a resumption. Every time we go through a paragraph, we should see whether a certain target is suitable or not, and whether the boundary conditions have changed. Has the goal been achieved in the past? What is the reason for the overfulfillment or not? In fact, the resumption is very important. It is a very important thing to improve learning ability.

Source: Gan Wenbin_NBJS7621, Responsible Editor of Beijing Newspaper