Ofo, a bike-sharing company with its headquarters in Shanghai, is headed by a 25 years old CEO.
Hard to believe? It’s true: with bike-sharing, another Mark Zuckerberg is born.
Da Wei co-founded ofo, which is now valued at USD$1 billion, with US$60 in the bank. They were told that they wouldn’t last 3 days by almost everyone, but the young entrepreneur has proved them wrong.
Without thinking about all the bicycle abuses, here’s his inspiring story.
Ofo’s founders are 2016 Peking University graduates
In 2014, Da Wei co-founded ofo with his fellow Peking University cycling club members. They were still undergraduates then. During the start-up period, their idea was trashed by their professors, friends and families, citing the impossibility of trusting complete strangers to take care of the bicycles. The friends pressed on, and today, it is quite a different story to tell.
Da Wei took more than 1 and a half year to convince his parents about ofo’s possibility
Da Wei’s parents simply did not believe in his vision for a bike-sharing company as they think that the bicycles will be stolen in 3 days flat. Da Wei’s parents wanted him to get either an internship with a big company or a full-time job after his graduation. However, the persistent entrepreneur succeeded in persuading his parents to let him try for a business.
Da Wei suffered tremendously in the early days
Da Wei confided that he was plagued with all sorts of problems in the last 2 years with ofo. The business was running into all sort of difficulties and it has caused major problems for Da Wei.
Da Wei is now a CEO of a multi-national company
3 years on, ofo is now a multi-national company with presence in many part of Asia, including Singapore. The company is now worth over US$1 billion dollars and have attracted big-name investors like Alibaba and Chinese ride-sharing giant Didi Chuxing. Ofo has raised more than US$700 million in a round of funding recently in early July.
Da Wei is expecting ofo to break even by 2017
In an interview with Conversation With, Da Wei shared that ofo is expected to break even by 2017 and to start earning a profit in 2018.
Da Wei is devising a new plan for ofo
Ofo has a fantastic management system that is more advanced than all other bike-sharing companies. With that in mind, Da Wei has stepped up the game by offering ofo’s platform to other bike companies so that users of other bike-sharing companies can use ofo’s platform to scan and unlock the bikes for their use. “Ofo is going to be like Android,” Da Wei predicted.
Think of it this way: now, ofo is selling “smartphones”. They’re now moving to sell the “OS” of the smartphone, which is Android, so that they won’t need to handle the logistics of the bike.
Da Wei is a believer of maths
When quizzed about the viability of his business model given the frequent reports of stolen or vandalised bicycles, Da Wei said that it is all numbers. He firmly believes that if all losses are calculated and put into the equation, the business will have a number of profit. And he has been proven right after 2 years of operation.
Da Wei has a vision for ofo
Da Wei has a great vision for ofo. While they are managing 6 million bikes right now, he has a vision to grow ofo up to a management of 100 million bicycles (might not be theirs: remember their new plan?) by 2030!
Now, whether you love or hate ofo bikes, or any bike-sharing companies in general, you can’t deny that Da Wei has created an empire for himself, and his tenacity is something we all have to learn.
Always bored during your commute to and fro work or school? Here’s the best solution: download our app for new articles, Facebook videos and YouTube videos that are updated daily…and most importantly, exclusive contents that are only available in our app! It’s your perfect companion for your daily commute!
This article was first published on goodyfeed.com
Do you love writing? Do you want a platform to showcase your works? Goody Feed is looking for part-time writers to join the team! Click here to find out more!