It is very rare that an individual is usually recognized by their company name. It happens because the brand becomes so famous that it becomes a reason for the recognition of that individual. As Microsoft will always be associated with Bill Gates, Apple with Steve jobs, Jack Ma Alibaba will always be a brand itself. Jack Ma, one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world, started Alibaba in 1999 and now Jack Ma is officially the richest man in China now with a net worth of $39.1 billion.
His company Alibaba is one of the world’s largest B2B website in the world. Last year on November 12, Alibaba set singles’ day record with $31 Billion in sales which is the biggest sales online in the world in 24 hours.
Jack Ma’s life before Alibaba has been no less than a roller coaster ride. Coming from a poor background and struggling hard to make ends meet, Jack worked hard from an early age to make a living. His struggles are often discussed in his speeches where he has openly talked about rejections, worries.
Jack believes that you need to dream big if you want to become successful. He says I know nothing about computers, I have little knowledge about the internet but I have a strong dream. In order to turn his dreams into reality, Jack often emphasizes on hiring people who are hard working, passionate and who are willing to become successful. For Alibaba, he hires people who are smarter than him.
Connecting with like-minded people to help you succeed in your mission is very important. He believes in teaming up with the right people who can carry your passion together and make your work grow.
Laying Down Alibaba’s Foundation:
In this clip from 1999, Jack Ma delivers a speech to his 17 friends in his apartment. This is the first time Jack introduced the concept of Alibaba and explained how he plans to compete with U.S. internet giants.
Jack always believed, if you want to experience long-lasting success, get a long-term vision first. In the early days of Alibaba, investment by Masayoshi Son made Jack Ma one of the most successful entrepreneurs in the world. Son says when he met Jack Ma, he had no business plan, he had zero revenue, had around 35-40 employees but his eyes were very shiny.
The way Jack talked, it showed a lot of charisma and leadership qualities. Son says Jack Ma’s early business model was wrong. Masayoshi Son, the founder and current CEO of SoftBank invested $20 million in Alibaba, by the time the company went public, it was worth roughly $19 billions. That’s an incredible return of 4500%.
The idea about Alibaba:
The world’s famous tech leader, the epitome of success is also inspired by someone. Last year in June, in a trip to Malaysia, Jack revealed how Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad’s vision for a tech-based business inspired Jack to try something similar for the Chinese market.
Ma was fascinated by Mahathir’s “Multimedia Super Corridor,” or MSC program presented in a local newspaper almost 20 years ago. The idea presented focused on uplifting Malaysia as a teach, futuristic country.
Jack Ma’s remarkable life transformation – From poverty to one of the richest man in China has a lot of lessons for everyone who wants to change their destiny and make their dreams come true. His story is an incredible story for everyone who has faced failures, disappointment in life but there are many things to learn from Jack Ma.
Now Jack wants to retire as Alibaba’s executive chairman and pursue his career as a teacher. He will stay on the company’s board until 2020. In an address to his employees and customers, Jack said, “No company can rely solely on its founders”.