|Alma mater||Wuhan University (1991)|
|Occupation(s)||Co-founder & CEO of Xiaomi|
Chairman of Kingsoft
Chairman of UCWeb Inc.
Chairman of YY.com
Chairman of Shunwei Capital
|Known for||Co-founder of Xiaomi|
|Board member of||Kingsoft|
|Spouse||Zhang Tong (张彤)|
|Website||Lei Jun's Weibo Page|
Lei Jun (born 16 December 1969) is a Chinese billionaire entrepreneur and philanthropist. He is known for founding the consumer electronics company Xiaomi. As of October 2022, Lei Jun's net worth was estimated at either US$8.1 billion according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index, making him the 203rd richest person in the world, or at $7.5 billion by Forbes, ranking him 265th worldwide.
Lei Jun was born on 7 December 1969 in Xiantao, in the underdeveloped countryside of Hubei. Both of his parents were teachers, which was a disgraced profession after the Cultural Revolution; his father made $7 per month. As a child, he was interested in electronics and liked disassembling and re-assembling radios, which was encouraged by his father. He made the first electric lamp in his village using two batteries, a bulb, a self-made wooden box, and some wires.
In 1987, he graduated from Mianyang Middle School (沔阳中学; now Xiantao Middle School) and began attending Wuhan University, from where he graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in computer science in 1991. During his last year of college, he founded his first company, Gundugoms. He also studied profusely and excelled at school.
In 1992, Lei joined Kingsoft as an engineer. He became the CEO of the company in 1998 and led it towards an initial public offering on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange in 2007. On 20 December 2007, he resigned as president and CEO of Kingsoft for "health reasons".
In 2010, Mr. Lei founded Xiaomi with multiple partners, including former Google executive Lin Bin. Xiaomi sells a wide range of electronics but focuses specifically on smartphones, which are similarly priced substantially below competitors and thrive in the Chinese market. By 2014, the company was valued at more than $46 billion, becoming the most valuable technology company in the world at launch. In April 2014, Xiaomi demonstrated the power of its brand by selling 2.1 million smartphones online in just 12 hours, setting a world record for the most cell phones sold in a single day on a single online platform. The company was also the first in the world to be launched on the Internet, with the most significant number of smartphones sold in a single day on a single online platform.
In 2011, he rejoined Kingsoft as chairman.
By 2017, Lei had donated $1 billion to charity, starting with a ¥140,000 donation in 1997 to his alma mater, Wuhan University. He later made donations to Zhuhai Charity, an organization that funds schools for migrants, the villagers of Yangchun for the renovation of schools and mudbrick houses and construction of cultural buildings, the victims of the 2013 Lushan earthquake, and was a participant in the Ice Bucket Challenge to raise funds for amyotrophic lateral sclerosis.
In 2021, he donated over $2.2 billion worth of Xiaomi shares to charity.
Awards and recognition
In 2019, Lei was recognized as an "Outstanding Builder of Socialism with Chinese Characteristics".
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