In 1988, China was awakened, its ancient glories and mighty power overshadowed by dust. Roaring and struggling, this exhausted sleeping lion remained vibrant and persevered, having seen much of the changes in human life.
1988 is the beginning of the first ten years of China’s opening and reform. This year saw Wang baixing, with RMB 5000 out of his own pocket, establish Tangshi cable factory in Changshu city, Jiangsu province.30 years of continuous innovation and upgrading helped charted Zhongli’s business map covering five high-end manufacturing industries, namely, special wire/cable and fiber optic cable, new energy PV industrial chain, new polymer material, military electronics and titanium 3D metallic printing. Zhongli Sci-Tech Group (herein referred to as Zhongli) had grown up to be a national key high-tech group, a top 500 private company in China and a top ten independent innovation enterprise.
Every leaping forward was closely related to product innovation.
In 1994, Zhongli’s first take-off came with the successful development of flame-retardant flexible cable, the sales of which reached 10 million yuan that year. Fire-resistant, low-smoke and halogen-free flexible cable re-developed in 1996 filled the domestic gaps and obtained 15 national invention patents. This market hit held 70% ofChina’s domestic market share.
Since then, Zhongli had successively launched new products such as communication optical cable, special flexible optical cable, digital internal shielding photoelectric cable for railway, new polymer material, automobile airbag and magnesium alloy parts, obtaining 23 national patents and 6 invention patents in total.
Wang Baixing once commented that continuously developing new products to tailor to the special industrial needs is the key to Zhongli’s achievements today.
From an A-share market beginner to an innovation PV leader
Since its birth, it took Wang Baixing 21 years to land Zhongli in A share market in 2009, while it took Zhongli only 8 years to rise to an industrial lead from a beginner in PV industry. Capital and industrial momentum are the key driving forces shaping Wang’s business empire.
In 2010, Zhongli founded Jiangsu Talesun Power Technology Company (later renamed Suzhou Talesun Solar Technology Company) to officially start expansion into PV industry. Having operated for just less than half a year, Zhongli encountered the down times in PV industry when overcapacity resulted in price slump. At that time, global PV manufacturing was running under deficit in a whole.
Wang Baixing did not retreat despite the fast declining. He was a firm believer in the future of PV industry amid China’s significant progress. While generally not considered a wise choice then, he took immediate action to build PV power plants in western regions, topping 700MW in 2012. By 2014, Zhongli had already developed over 2GW capacities when the rush for PV power plants just began.
In the following two years, large ground power plants were built on a large scale in western China with their own problems. As western region plants are restricted by relevant policies in load curtailment, land acquisition and power consumption, many PV companies are inflicted with financial problems, such as shortage of funds.
At that time, Wang Baixing had already led Zhongli out in its transition to "Photovoltaic+" schema. In response to the national call for eliminating poverty, he actively explored innovative ways of PV poverty alleviation. Wang baixing’s keen market sense and unique judgment tided Zhongli over the PV depression in 2012 and the subsequent western power plant crisis.
PV poverty alleviation makes a more brilliant career
Probing into "Photovoltaic+" schema enabled Wang Baixing to discover his new interests. Under his guidance, Zhongli devoted itself to PV poverty alleviation, shifting its focus from capital-centered commercial power plants to light asset EPC contracting for poverty reduction.
From 2015 to 2017, Zhongli pioneered the launch of new third generation agricultural PV poverty alleviation programs: the first generation being "Smart PV + Technological agriculture"；the second being "Poverty stricken village PV farm" and the third one is "Family sunshine farm" .
Born in the countryside, Wang Baixing is attached to the land. He invested heavily in research and development to tap the potential of land. In these agricultural PV projects, Wang Baixing took innovative moves to lift the module mount to over 4 meters above ground and expand the space between PV module supports to more than 10 meters. Single panel installation, tilt adjustments and similar measures enabled penetration rates to reach more than 70% beneath the module where rice, wheat and other food crops can be mechanically cultivated. It was an exemplary approach to mechanized PV agriculture.
From then on Zhongli had furthered its efforts in PV poverty alleviation. In the past few years, Zhongli built 370MW first generation "Smart PV + technological agriculture" demonstration bases in Qinghai, Ningxia, Shandong and Jiangsu provinces, lifting more than 13,000 poor families in over twenty impoverished villages out of poverty. The second generation "Poverty-stricken village PV farm" poverty alleviation program had helped 43 poverty-stricken counties across the country to shake off poverty, benefitting over 440,000 people. Zhongli received numerous awards as a result, including Global Top 500 New Energy Innovation Enterprises, China Energy Industry Poverty Alleviation Innovation Award, China Energy Enterprise Innovation Responsibility Award and China Energy Project Innovation Award.
When asked why he dedicated himself to PV poverty alleviation, Wang baoxing’s reply was always as follows.
"I am a son of my mother, and also of the peasant." Being a child, he barely survived for lack of food. At that time, there were no poverty alleviation programs in place. He did hope that someone could come to their rescue, even if only with a few pounds of rice. When he grew up to be a capable entrepreneur, Wang Baixing lived up to his initial commitments, the very incentive prompting Zhongli to actively participate in PV poverty alleviation.
PV poverty alleviation program had become a new way for poverty alleviation in rural China, being listed as one of the top ten poverty alleviation programs by the State Council Office for Poverty Alleviation. Wang Baixing predicted that PV poverty alleviation would remain to be a promising sector in the next three years. Zhongli planned to build "Poverty stricken village PV farm" for 300 impoverished counties and more than 25,000 poor villages by the end of 2019, benefiting a total of over 3 million people.
Wang Baixing was beginning a new round of strategic planning for the third ten years now. Being a newcomer in the new energy vehicles and power batteries sector, Zhongli announced its plan in February this year to acquire shares worth around 10 billion yuan from Shenzhen BAK Battery limited company. As the crucial components of new energy vehicle, power batteries have very promising market prospects.