Cheng Wei, Co-founder and Chief Executive of China’s largest ride-sharing service provider Didi Chuxing (Didi) is Forbes Asia’s Businessman of the Year for 2016.
- 33-year-old Cheng is also featured on the cover of the December issue of Forbes Asia Magazine.
- According to Forbes Asia, Didi has attracted 300 million users in 400 Chinese cities in just four years. The service, which lets consumers digitally hail and pay for taxis, private cars, limousines and commuter buses commands 85% of China’s ride-sharing market, which Beijing research firm Analysis International estimates will reach 122 billion yuan ($17.7 billion) by end of 2016 and 286 billion yuan in 2018.
About Cheng Wei
Cheng Wei also known as Will Wei, is CEO of China’s ride-hailing firm Didi Kuaidi, which was formed in early 2015 when Cheng’s company Didi Dache merged with Kuaidi Dache.
- Before founding Didi Dache, Cheng spent 8 years at e-commerce firm Alibaba and became vice president for Alibaba’s online payment service Alipay.
- Will was born in 1983 in Shangrao, a city located in the southeastern province of Jiangxi. He received a bachelor’s degree in administration from Beijing University of Chemical Technology.
- After graduation, Cheng served as an assistant to a chairman at a foot massage company and about one year later, applied to join Alibaba as a sales person for its business-to-business e-commerce service in 2005.
- In his six years at Alibaba, Will rose to being a sales manager for the northern region of China. Then, he moved to China’s largest third-party online payment platform, Alipay, where he quickly gained a reputation as a talented manager despite his age and rose through the ranks to become the company’s youngest regional manager.
- In 2012, Will left Alibaba and founded Beijing Orange Technology Co and launched Didi Dache
- In 2014, he hired Jean Liu(Liu Qing), a former Goldman Sachs Asia managing director as the COO of his company. In February 2015, the company merged with its rival Kuaidi Dache to become Didi Kuaidi.
About Forbes Asia
Forbes Asia identifies Asia’s noteworthy individuals from the richest people to the most powerful businesswomen and to the most philanthropic, and the executive ranks of the most dynamic companies to the best big corporations.
- Launched in September 2005, Forbes Asia is written and edited specifically for Asia-based top management, entrepreneurs and those aspiring to positions of corporate leadership, every issue of Forbes Asia give equal weight to original Asia-specific articles and the best of Forbes from the rest of the world.
- Forbes Asia editors choose the man or woman for businessman of the year, whose accomplishments as a business owner, manager or investor symbolize the year’s best practices in the region.
- Past winners include Suh KyungBae of AmorePacific, Lei Jun of Xiaomi, Wang Jianlin of Dalian Wanda Group, Morris Chang of TSMC, and Dhanin Chearavanont of CP Group.