Legend's Liu Chuanzhi hails company's successful debut on Hong Kong Stock Exchange
For Legend Holdings founder and chairman Liu Chuanzhi, the atmosphere at his company's listing on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange on Monday seemed quite familiar.
Everyone was all smiles, a pack of media representatives were present to ask questions and take pictures, and there was a palpable expectation among the principals that more work lies ahead.
"Today is the second time that I stand here and participate in the gong ceremony for listing in the Hong Kong stock exchange," Liu said.
The first time was in February 1994, when Liu presided over the trading debut of Beijing-based personal computer maker Legend Holdings. Its corporate name was changed to Lenovo Group in 2003, reflecting a business focus separate from the other activities of investment holding company parent Legend.
When Lenovo was listed, Liu reminisced that the company's market capitalisation was about HK$900 million.
"After 20 years of much effort, Lenovo's market capitalisation is now HK$120 billion -- an increase of 130 times," he said.
Since its blockbuster purchase of IBM's personal computer business in for US$1.75 billion in 2005, Lenovo has diversified its business to include, smartphones, media tablets, servers and enterprise storage systems, and made other strategic acquisitions.
Lenovo, which has established dual headquarters in mainland China and the United States, is the world's largest supplier of personal computers, with operations in about 160 countries. Legend has a 30.56 per cent controlling stake in Lenovo.
"Due to the different economic environment, I cannot guarantee that Legend Holdings will be able to have such a [similar] pace of development," Liu said. "But I'm sure that all of my colleagues at Legend will work harder ... to meet the expectations of our long-term investors."
Founded by Liu in 1984, Legend has grown into one of mainland China's biggest investment groups. It invests in companies across six segments: information technology, financial services, agriculture and food, property, chemicals and energy materials, and so-called modern services, which include domestic car rental giant CAR and dental clinic chain operator Bybo.
Despite the expectations for Legend to perform well amid a global economy roiled by Greece's financial problems, Liu was unfazed.
"We do not pay too much attention to the ups and downs of the stock market. We care about our long-term future," Liu said.
"We will be worthy of our customers, our employees, society and the support and trust of the people."
At 9:31am, shares of Legend rose 0.4 per cent to HK$43.15, while the Hang Seng Index shed 0.79 per cent to 26,451.96, after the People’s Bank of China cut the interest rates for the fourth times since November.