Cao Dewang’s business education began on the streets, cycling a round-trip 80km to sell fruit in the city of Fuqing. He spent some time as a chef before landing a job in 1976 at Fuqing Gao Shan Special Glass Factory.
And his big break?
In 1983 he was asked to take over the failing factory by the local government. He turned it around, changing its name to Fuyao Glass.
The data you need to know…
Cao listed his firm in Shanghai in 1993. Fuyao makes glass for cars and controls more than half of the Chinese market, as well as supplying Volvo, Audi, GM and Ford overseas. Exports historically made up 40% of revenues, but Cao forecasts they will hit 50% this year. The Fuyao Group’s revenue’s of Rmb5.7 billion in 2008 helped Forbes classify Cao as China’s 53rd richest man.
Why’s he in the news?
He is the first Chinese winner of the Ernst & Young World Entrepreneur of the Year Award (2009).
In his own words…
“My next goal is to make glass more perfect; the aim is to invent the world’s first intelligent glass within five years; that can be sensitive to sunlight and better protect the driver’s eyes.”
And to relax…
Golf is his sole hobby. He usually tees off at 4am; with golf course staff lighting the course with torches.
© ChinTell Ltd. All rights reserved.
Exclusively sponsored by HSBC.
The Week in China website and the weekly magazine publications are owned and maintained by ChinTell Limited, Hong Kong. Neither HSBC nor any member of the HSBC group of companies ("HSBC") endorses the contents and/or is involved in selecting, creating or editing the contents of the Week in China website or the Week in China magazine. The views expressed in these publications are solely the views of ChinTell Limited and do not necessarily reflect the views or investment ideas of HSBC. No responsibility will therefore be assumed by HSBC for the contents of these publications or for the errors or omissions therein.