Liu Qiangdong Sets Sights on Philanthropic Outreach: Raising Money For Common Prosperity
When Liu Qiangdong first set his sights on becoming an entrepreneur, it was unlikely that he could foresee where his goals would lead him. Founder of JD.com, one of the largest e-commerce platforms in the world, Liu Qiangdong has made a name and a reputation for himself as a savvy business leader directing his company through a rapidly growing new space. While these things are true, they are not all that Liu Qiangdong wants to be remembered for.
Working in concert with China’s President Xi Jinping, Liu would commit to donating more than $2.34 billion in JD.com shares to charity on behalf of China’s common prosperity movement. The movement came in the wake of President Xi Jinping’s decision to ease inequality within the nation’s economy by targeting tech leaders like JD and Alibaba.
Let’s take a closer look at Liu’s work with JD.com as well as his latest decision to donate billions to charitable programmes throughout the world.
March Toward Common Prosperity
As China continues to push toward economic prosperity, President Xi Jinping aims to use the nation’s burgeoning tech sector to help lighten the load. JD.com’s Liu Qiangdong announced that he would donate roughly $62 million Class B JD shares to charity. Worth more than $2 billion, the Class B shares were valued at $75.08 at the time of this writing.
Far from being the only major figure to join the cause of supporting charitable endeavours, Liu was joined by other big names like Tencent and Meituan. Meituan’s CEO and Founder, Wang Xing, announced a donation to his personal charity at an amount north of $2.27 billion. Tencent also dedicated nearly $8 billion in spending on social initiatives and environmental concerns.
One of the driving reasons behind the massive charity initiative by President Xi Jinping has been the separation between the nation’s GDP and the fortune of its most wealthy individuals. A massive wealth gap threatens to split people more than ever. From 2011 to 2020, China saw its GDP nearly double while the wealthiest individuals in the country saw their fortunes increase by a factor of six.
As the walk toward common prosperity continues, don’t be surprised to see more donations and charitable efforts from individuals like Liu Qiangdong and other major tech players.
Background History Of Liu Qiangdong
With a fortune surpassing $15.9 billion, Liu’s ascent up the ladder of Forbes’ Real-Time Billionaire list was stunning to watch. What makes the story even more stunning is that Liu’s rise in business originated from a relatively innocuous background.
Liu was born and raised in China south of Beijing in the small village of Chang’an. It was there that Liu was raised in poverty, forced to endure a diet consisting of just sweet potato and corn. Twice a year, Liu’s family would be allowed to eat due to the high price of the product. After leaving his village behind, Liu would broaden his horizons by attending the People’s University of China. Qiangdong would study sociology, working for companies by writing letters and coding.
Qiangdong established JD.com’s first server after graduating college. Writing the code himself, Qiangdong launched JD.com in 2008. Now focused on fostering growth and common prosperity, Qiangdong has committed to giving back to the people of China.