Zhang Yin - China's Leading Woman Entrepreneur

            
 
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Case Details:

Case Code : LDEN051
Case Length : 14 Pages
Period : 1998-2007
Pub Date : 2007
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Nine Dragons Paper Holdings Limited
Industry : Packaging
Countries : China

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This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.



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"Other people saw scrap paper as garbage, but I saw it as a forest of trees. "1

- Zhang Yin, Chairman, Nine Dragons Paper (Holdings) Limited, in 2007.

"The company is the leader in the industry. There's an expanding market and a shortage of supply. We still like her story."2

- Lilian Co, Manager, Baring Hong Kong China Fund3, in 2007.

Introduction

In October 2006, the Shanghai-based Hurun Report4 declared that Zhang Yin5 (Zhang), Chairperson of Nine Dragons Paper Holdings Limited (Nine Dragons), was 'the richest person in China.' She was the first woman to top the list. According to the report, 49-year-old Zhang was the richest self-made woman in the world with personal wealth of around US$ 3.4 billion, ahead of the US chat show hostess, Oprah Winfrey6; CEO of eBay7, Meg Whitman8; and JK Rowling9, author of the Harry Potter series (Refer to Exhibit I for the Top 20 in the Hurun Report - China Rich list).

Zhang started her entrepreneurial career by establishing a small waste paper trading business in Hong Kong in the year 1985.

Leadership and Entrepreneurship Case Studies | Case Study in Management, Operations, Strategies, Leadership and Entrepreneurship, Case Studies

She went to the US in 1990, and from there began shipping scrap paper to China. In 1995, she incorporated Nine Dragons to manufacture paperboard and paper-based packaging products.

With the boom in the Chinese economy, there was a sharp growth in exports from China and so in the demand for packaging products.

Nine Dragons began supplying packaging products to several manufacturers including multinational companies like Nike, Coca-Cola, TCL, Haier, and Sony.

In order to raise capital to expand its business, Nine Dragons floated an IPO in March 2006. With positive reports about the growing packaging industry in China and the future prospects of Nine Dragons, the shares were well received by investors. On the first day of trading, the share price rose by 40%.

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1]  Allen T. Cheng, "Cardboard Queen Zhang Recycles to Become China's Richest Person," www.bloomberg.com, January 16, 2007.

2]  Allen T. Cheng, "Cardboard Queen Zhang Recycles to Become China's Richest Person," www.bloomberg.com, January 16, 2007.

3]  Baring Hong Kong China Fund is the fourth largest shareholder in Nine Dragons with 29 million shares.

4]  Hurun Report was set up by Rupert Hoogewerf, who had been publishing the list of wealthy people in China for American magazine, Forbes since 1999. He was dropped by Forbes in 2003 after which he started publishing the Hurun Report.

5]  Zhang Yin is also known as Cheung Yan in Hong Kong.

6] Oprah Winfrey is the host of the highest rated talk show in the history of television 'The Oprah Winfrey Show,' which began in 1986. It is a highly popular show, in which several famous personalities are interviewed and several topics including self-improvement, philanthropy, and world events are discussed. Oprah Winfrey was ranked as the richest African American in the 20th century and she featured on the Forbes' list as the world's only black billionaire for three years running, worth over US$ 1.5 billion as of mid-2007.

7] eBay.com is an online auction and shopping website managed by the US based Internet company eBay Inc. In 2006, eBay Inc. recorded revenues of US$ 5.97 billion.

8] Meg Whitman became CEO and President of eBay in March 1998. In 2007, she was worth US$ 1.3 billion according to Forbes.

9] JK Rowling is the pen name of English fiction writer Joanne Rowling. She is the author of the Harry Potter series. Forbes estimated her wealth at around US $1 billion in 2007. She is the second richest woman from the entertainment world after Oprah Winfrey.

 

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