Sim Wong Hoo
Sim Wong Hoo (Chinese: 沈望傅; pinyin: Shěn Wàng Fù; born 1955) is the founder, CEO and Chairman of Creative Technology, a designer and manufacturer of products for personal computers and personal digital entertainment devices. Creative is notable for products such as the SoundBlaster audio card and the Creative ZEN range of audio and media products.
Early life and career
Sim Wong Hoo was born in Singapore to a Zhao'an Hokkien family and is an alumnus of Bukit Panjang Government High School. He graduated from the Electrical & Electronic Engineering faculty of Ngee Ann Polytechnic (then known as Ngee Ann Technical College) in 1975, after which he worked in the private engineering sector.
On 1 July 1981, with an initial capital outlay of US$6,000, Sim (along with former schoolmate Ng Kai Wa) founded Creative Technology in the form of a computer repairs shop in Pearl's Centre, which is located at Chinatown. There he developed and sold an add-on memory board for the Apple II computer. Later, Creative began creating customized PCs adapted for the Chinese language, including enhanced audio capabilities that allowed the devices to produce speech and melodies. The success of this audio interface led to the development of the stand-alone sound card named Sound Blaster. It was among the first dedicated audio processing cards to be made widely available to the general consumer. Creative dominated the PC audio market until the 2000s, when OEM PCs began to be built with sound boards integrated directly onto the motherboard and the Sound Blaster found itself reduced to a niche product.
Achievements and Recognition
Sim Wong Hoo has won accolades from industry and government for his prolific innovations. This includes his winning Singapore’s Public Star Medal Bintang Bakti Masyarakat in 2001 for his outstanding achievements in the business field; being named in second spot as Asia’s Businessman of the Year in January 2001 by Fortune Magazine; winning the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award from organisers of the European DVD summit in April 2000; and by being appointed Chairman of Singapore’s Technopreneurship 21 Private Sector Committee in March 1999.
At age of 45, he became the youngest billionaire in Singapore. He was also the first person to be named Singapore's Businessman of the Year twice, in 1992 and 1997. In 2002, he was named Person of the Year by the Singapore Computer Society in recognition of his contribution to the IT industry. Sim is widely considered to be the star entrepreneur of Singapore and he currently chairs Singapore's Technopreneurship 21 Private Sector Committee.
In 1999, Sim Wong Hoo released a book entitled 'Chaotic Thoughts From The Old Millennium', in which he coined and popularized the term "No U-turn syndrome" to describe the stereotypical Singaporean mindset of requiring permission from higher authorities before taking any action.
- Creative Technology Pte Ltd
- "75 Power Players: Back at the Lab...". Next Generation. Imagine Media (11): 73. November 1995.
- SCS IT Leader Awards 2003, Person of the Year Archived 2012-09-09 at Archive.is
- Sim, Wong Hoo (1999). Chaotic Thoughts from the Old Millennium. Singapore: Creative O Pte Ltd. ISBN 981-04-2383-7.
- Grace Ching (April 8, 2012). "Creative's Sim Wong Hoo is back". The Straits Times. Retrieved April 8, 2012.
- "Sim Wong Hoo rises up like a phoenix". Newnation. April 9, 2012. Retrieved April 16, 2012.