JD continues to be a leader in the tech industry

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Richard Liu is one of China’s most reputable entrepreneurs. Many know him as the pioneer of JD.com, one of the largest e-commerce platforms in the country. His ability to start and grow the firm to become an industry leader has earned him the title “internet celebrity.” He has been running the company as the board chairman and the Chief Executive Officer since it was established in 2004.

While pursuing his university education, Richard Liu decided to start a restaurant business, which later collapsed, as he could not get enough time to manage it. The beginnings of JD.com dates back to 1998 when the seasoned entrepreneur launched a store for selling computer accessories in Beijing. He named the business Jingdong, which grew rapidly and expanded its operations to 12 stores within the first five years of operations.

In less than a decade, JD expanded to other areas and reported the annual revenue as $9 million. Given the company’s growth and the state of the e-commerce sector at the time, the CEO decided to open online stores in early 2004. Richard Liu’s commitment to offering quality and a variety of computer accessories led to a significant increase in sales revenue.

The organization became one of the largest internet companies in the country. Some people referred to it as China’s Amazon. JD’s revenue makes it one of the largest online retailers worldwide and the largest in the Asian country. Statistics showed that the organization had a 54.3% market share in 2014.

In 2016, JD broke a record by becoming the first China-based internet business to be named as one of the Fortune 500 Companies. Many business analysts attribute the growth of the online retailer to the CEO’s unique approach and model. It offers a wide range of products, including cosmetics, fresh food, and electronics.

The management’s decision to source goods from suppliers directly and resell them to shoppers has enabled the organization to have control over the supply chain and guarantee the authenticity of products. Besides building trust among the customers, this is also an indication that JD values honesty and reliability practices.

When Richard Liu realized the company had gained popularity in all parts of the country, he developed a logistics system to make sure goods do not get lost or damaged when being delivered to customers. This enabled the online retailer to reach millions of customers locally and globally.

Last year’s World Artificial Intelligence Conference took place in Shanghai, China. Dr. Bowen Zhou represented JD during the event. According to him, Richard Liu’s company was one of the first enterprises that have managed to move the real economy online, enabling a connection between industrial internet and consumer internet.

The China-based online retailer has many years of accumulated technology and experience in various fields, enabling it to offer internet infrastructure. The annual event involves key stakeholders, including businesses, experienced professionals, and academics, to discuss the future development of artificial intelligence. Dr. Zhou is the President of JD Cloud and AI.

He loves attending the events. The company announced that it had signed a partnership with Philips to provide better approaches to customer engagement. For example, JD would use computer vision to understand how customers perceive particular product images and natural language processing to evaluate pre- and post-shopping behavior.

There was a large scale online exhibition through a mobile phone app to complement WAIC’s offline presence. Liu’s company revealed several projects in various business groups, including AI in finance, retail, cities, and logistics. This was proof that JD is a global leader in technology and supply chain. Dr. Zhou believes AI can be used in a variety of fields to streamline operations and improve productivity.

Story by James Blake


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