Born on October 25, 1944 into a rural family where both parents were school teachers, Mr. Ren Zhengfei spent his primary and middle school years in a remote mountainous town in Guizhou Province. In 1963, he studied at the Chongqing Institute of Civil Engineering and Architecture. After graduation, he was employed in the civil engineering industry until 1974 when he joined the military’s Engineering Corps as a soldier tasked to establish the Liao Yang Chemical Fiber Factory. Subsequently, Mr. Ren had taken positions as a Technician, an Engineer, and was lastly promoted as a Deputy Director, which was a professional role equivalent to a Deputy Regimental Chief, but without military rank.
Because of his outstanding performance, Mr. Ren was invited to attend the National Science Conference in 1978 and the 12th National Congress of the Communist Party of China in 1982. Mr. Ren retired from the army in 1983 when the Chinese government disbanded the entire Engineering Corps. He then worked in the logistics service base of the Shenzhen South Sea Oil Corporation. As he was dissatisfied with his job, he decided to establish Huawei with a capital of CNY21,000 in 1987. He became the CEO of Huawei in 1988 and has held the title ever since.
Ren Zhengfei Full Biography and Profile
Born on October 25, 1944 in the small, mountainous province of Guizhou, China, Ren Zhengfei is the founder and CEO of Huawei Technologies, one of the largest telecommunications and mobile telephone companies in the world.
Ren Zhengfei is a trained engineer. He graduated from the Institute of Civil Engineering and Architecture of Chongqing in 1963.
This engineer followed an unusual path to launch Huawei Technologies in the late 1980s, and in a few decades became the leader of the world’s third largest telecommunications company. One of the richest men in China, Ren Zhengfei’s wealth totals $1.7 billion.
In the 60s, after he received his engineering degree, Ren Zhengfei began his career as a civil engineer. But job prospects proved precarious in a China shaken by the turmoil of the Cultural Revolution. He joined the ranks of the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) in 1974 to work on a project making synthetic fiber in Liao Yang. He said no one wanted to work in this poor and remote area of central China, and the Chinese government was forced to send the army to complete this project by recruiting those who agreed to help build new plant.
Thus, Ren Zhengfei found a career in the military, which he called “fortuitous.” The modest engineer found success and he rose to the rank of deputy director. As a reward, he was invited to the National Science Conference in 1978 as a delegate of the PLA and he attended the 12th National Congress of the Communist Party in 1982.
In 1983, a turning point in his engineering career forced him to shift to entrepreneurship. His entire engineering corps was disbanded by the Chinese government and he left the army after a remarkable rise. But he had only a modest pension and was forced to work for the logistics department of the Shenzhen South Sea Oil Corporation. It was a difficult transition because Ren Zhengfei did not like this new business environment.
However, Ren Zhengfei saw no shortage of possiblities and he decided in 1987 to create a business reselling electronic equipment imported into China. With little money, he “started small” by creating Huawei in Shenzhen with a few thousand euros – the registered capital of the company originally amounted to 21,000 yuan, or less than 3000 euros. Ren Zhengfei became CEO of the telecommunications business in 1988, and has since taken his position at the head of Huawei.
Ren Zhengfei as of 2019 worth $1.8B
Ren Zhengfei Quick Facts
- Ren Zhengfei leads Huawei Technologies, one of the world’s largest manufacturer of telecommunication hardware and mobile phones.
- Ren is the son of school teachers and grew up in a mountainous town in southern China’s Guizhou Province.
- Ren held technician posts in China’s military and worked for Shenzhen South Sea Oil before establishing Huawei with the equivalent of $3,000 in 1987.
- Huawei today does business in more than 170 countries with 180,000 employees.
- Ren Zhengfei’s company Huawei Technologies, which was founded in 1987, is today a world-leading supplier of telecommunications equipment and mobile phones that employs over 150,000 people around the world.
Ren Zhengfei Full Biography and Profile (Ren Zhengfei)