On April 8 in the year 1966, one of the pioneers in the manufacture of electric cars was born in Anhui, China. His name is Wang Chuanfu, the founder of BYD Company Ltd., a maker of batteries and China’s best-selling electric cars. According to forbes.com, his net worth increased to $23.4 billion in 2021 from $5.6 billion in 2017.
Wang Chuanfu was the son of an impoverished farming couple. He obtained his bachelor’s degree from the Central South University (CSU) in Hunan Province. He is also a holder of a master’s degree from the the Beijing Non-Ferrous Research Institute. After graduation, he joined government service as a researcher.
In 1995, Wang Chuanfu founded BYD which stands for Build Your Dreams. From a small factory producing battery, it grew to become the largest manufacturer of mobile phone battery. In 2002, the company created BYD electronics as an OEM of handsets for famous brands like Nokia and Motorola. The following year, it bought an unknown automobile company and renamed it as BYD Auto Company. The company went on to produce electric cars and buses as well as fork lifts and trucks.
In 2007, BYD made its debut in the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. The next year, in 2008, Wang and BYD caught the attention of the world with the news that legendary billionaire Warren Buffet is taking a 10% stake in his BYD for $230 million. Right away, BYD stock price soared and propelled Wang to become the richest man in China. Since then, its share price had fallen although the company’s fundamentals remained the same.
Wang Chuanfu is married but has no children.