If in the rest of the world the technology sector is still dominated by male presence, so cannot be said for the Chinese technology industry. As reported by South China Morning Post, in China’s booming technology sector women play a bigger role than men and more than 55 per cent of tech start-ups are founded by women (compared to 22 per cent in the US). But who are these women?
Jean Liu, 40, president of Didi Chuxing
Jean Liu is the daughter of Lenovo founder Liu Chuanzhi and she was born in 1978 in Beijing. After her studies at Peking University, she continued her studies at Harvard, USA, and then worked for Goldman Sachs Asia for a decade. Jean Liu is now the president of DIDI and, since joining the company in 2014, the company has managed to break up with Uber Technologies and become one of the world’s most valuable private start-ups worth US $ 56 billion; processing more than 25 million bookings a day.
Anna Fang, 36, CEO of ZhenFund
ZhenFund is a venture capital firm specializing in seed, start-up, and early stage investments and Anna Fang manages a US$950 million fund, with her portfolio including the e-commerce platform Red and facial recognition start-up Yitu Technology. This woman received her Bachelor’s degree from Columbia University, a Master’s in Business Administration from Stanford University, and ,before joining ZhenFund, Anna worked at GE China in Corporate Business Development, responsible for GE’s M&A and BD efforts in China.
Liu Zhen, senior vice-president of ByteDance
Liu Zhen is the niece of Lenovo founder Liu Chuanzhi, and Jean Liu’s cousin. Liu joined ByteDance, the new media firm behind news app Toutiao and the owner of Musical.ly, in her current position two years ago. Her previous experiences? A law degree from the University of California, Berkeley, and a nine-year apprenticeship in the US advising tech firms in Silicon Valley.
Peng Lei, 46, chairwoman of Ant Financial
Peng Lei is definitely among the most successful women. She was one of the 18 founders of Alibaba and she started in human resources. In 2010 she became CEO of Alipay and since then, Alipay grown into China’s biggest online payment service. With a five-year career life as a teacher behind her, she is known for her firm but flexible management skills. Now she is also the chairwoman of the US$70 billion unicorn.