JD.com alias Jingdong, formerly known as 360 buy, is one of China’s largest e-commerce company with its headquarters based in Beijing. The company was established by Richard Liu Qiangdong in 1998 and went online in 2004. The company currently has 30.8 million registered and active users. The name JD came as a result of merging his first name with his wife’s last name.
Richard Liu’s journey in life is a classic rag to riches bout through serious determination, realistic goals, and ambition. He was born in Suqian, Jiangsu province to his parents who owned a small transportation company, shipping coal to and from the North and South of China. During his younger years, he spent his free time learning computer programming and earned an EMBA.
In college, Richard Liu ventured into the restaurant business with money acquired from programming work, after his grandmother got sick and his family’s business brought in little or no revenue thus rendering them poor. The business failed after a few months, and two years later he opened 12 physical retail stores specializing in the sale of computer appliances. The business venture, however, was disrupted due to a SARS outbreak in 2003 that forced his employees and clients to stay at home resulting in the loss of 8 million yuan. Nevertheless, Richard Liu stayed behind with his management team rethinking about his business model and steps that he will take towards starting an online store. In 2004, he closed down all his stores and ventured into e-commerce.
Liu founded JD.com, a retail online store which over the years dealt with various items, with consumer goods, food, and fashion items being the hottest selling products. Richard Liu rejected an offer in 2005 to sell his website for 18 million yuan and in 2007, expanded the site from selling computer appliances to a variety of goods for his customers. See Related Link for additional information.
Richard Liu’s online store stood out and grew faster than the others. He realized existing online store sold many counterfeit products, inflated prices of consumer goods and the overall market was chaotic. He resulted in selling genuine and good quality products to consumers, issue authentic invoices and receipts, and provide the best browsing experience to his customers through his functional, interactive and easy to use website.
JD.com has been compared to well-known e-commerce sites such as Amazon due to a similar business model. Deliveries in Asian countries, for instance, Beijing can take as little as 3 hours, and international shipping takes approximately 10-15 days.
Richard Liu Qiangdong’s plans for expansion include bringing the best quality products from around the world into Asia, keep his focus on E-commerce only and take over South East Asia before venturing into Europe and Asia.