Yao Lijun: Seeking to build world-class Chinese chips
Editor's note: East China's Zhejiang province is renowned for its large international population. Aloft on the wings of China's reform and opening-up policy, a group of Zhejiang people have gone abroad to make a living since the 1970s. As this year marks the 40th anniversary of the policy, the Zhejiang website (www.ezhejiang.gov.cn) is launching a series of stories about overseas Chinese who are originally from Zhejiang, as well as those who are active in the province's development. Stories courtesy of Zhejiang Federation of Returned Overseas Chinese and Zheshang Magazine
Yao Lijun, chairman and president of Ningbo-based Konfoong Materials International Co [Photo/Zheshang Magazine]
"China's reform and opening-up has provided me with four development opportunities," said Yao Lijun, chairman and president of Ningbo-based Konfoong Materials International Co, the national leading manufacturer of metal materials and integrated circuit chips.
"Starting business in Zhejiang province made who I am today," Yao said, an overseas Chinese entrepreneur who has a savvy mind both towards business as well as research and development.
A graduate of Harbin Institute of Technology, one of China's best engineering institutes, Yao believes that it was China's reform and opening-up that gave him the opportunity to receive higher education, where he dabbled in the engineering sector and had his first taste of the market economy.
During his doctoral study, Yao received a scholarship from Japan and studied abroad there, the second opportunity allowing him to expand his horizons and build up overseas experiences.
Unlike other overseas students who desire to find a decent job in local areas, Yao had clear goals of studying abroad and bringing back advanced technology and management expertise from Japan, which was his third opportunity.
The fourth opportunity came in 2005 when Yao and his six partners decided to start business in Zhejiang province, a land with an active private economy thanks to China's reform and opening-up, and established the Konfoong Materials International Co.
Thirteen years on, the small business has evolved into a listed behemoth with international influence through a sales network expanding to Japan, South Korea, Singapore and North America. More than 100 chip factories worldwide use target materials from Konfoong.
Talking about his future plans, Yao said the company will take root in metal and target materials areas and strive to take a 30 percent global market share, as well as establish a world-class semiconductor factory.
Earlier this year, Yao was awarded by Zhejiang province for major contributions to science and technology.
Konfoong Materials International Co, a Ningbo-based manufacturer of metal materials and integrated circuit chips [Photo/IC]