JD.com has been an e-commerce giant in China for almost a decade. This is something that took quite a significant amount of time, as founder Richard Liu Qiangdong has noted. However, Richard Liu initially wasn’t on the path to launching an online retailer. Instead, he had studied Sociology at the People’s University of China. This is something he would eventually change his mind on, as he realized that it wouldn’t lead to a viable career for him. As such, he began learning Computer Science. This led to a variety of difference freelance opportunities, and an eventual position with Japan Life, a nutritional supplement provider.
With his hard work and dedication, Richard Liu Qiangdong climbed through the ranks at Japan Life relatively quickly; this culminated in the position of Director of Computers with the firm. Despite his success with the business, Richard Liu still had the urge to launch his own company. This led to him leaving the business and establishing Jingdong, a small store that sold a limited range of products. Though it had a small product portfolio, the company became increasingly known for its customer service. This was the primary driver behind its growth over the following years.
However, a significant challenge appeared with a SARS outbreak that quickly spread across China. This had a considerable effect on how Richard Liu Qiangdong could do business. As such, he developed the plan that led to him establishing JD.com. Despite it not being something he initially envisioned when founding the company, it proved to be quite a considerable one and became a cornerstone of the business’ success since then. As Richard Liu moved his products online, JD.com’s popularity began to grow across China.
Product manufacturer’s noticed this popularity and soon began partnering with the company. Because of its growing product portfolio, Richard Liu Qiangdong was able to rapidly expand the business in subsequent years. Since then, JD.com has become China’s leading e-commerce platform with over 100 million active users. JD.com has grown so large that Forbes recently estimated it to be worth over $12 billion, with that amount growing on consistently.