Millet doesn't want to be profitable for 3 to 5 years

37 hours of sold 400,000 units of Xiaomi mobile phone; the product was listed on the Morgan Stanley's ninth-largest mobile phone brand and the largest domestic brand in only one week of listing; it is expected that the sales volume in 2012 will reach 5 billion yuan. With gratifying achievements, Lei Jun, the founder of Xiaomi Technology, said in an exclusive interview with this reporter that in the next 3 to 5 years, Xiaomi is most concerned about the user and user experience and is not concerned about profitability.

It is not too late to start a business at the age of 40. Reporter: You and Qiu Bojun founded Jinshan, and Jinshan listed in 2007; you later established and sold it to Amazon in 2004. In recent years, you have invested more than a dozen companies and you have made a lot of money. Why are you still thinking about starting a business?

Lei Jun: To be honest, when I proposed to start a business, many people were puzzled, including my most important partner, Lin Bin, the president of Xiaomi. When I said that I wanted to start business with him, he was surprised and said, "You have everything, why do you want to start a business?"

When I was 18 years old, I read a book called "Fire in Silicon Valley." At that time, I dreamed that one day I would be able to do a world-class enterprise like Steve Jobs. When I was 40 years old, I sold a company, listed a company and invested more than a dozen companies. It seems that all goals in life have been achieved, but I told you that after doing this, I became even more confused.

I was asking myself if I still have the courage to start a new business. Can I still tirelessly move forward for 6 x 12 hours? The answer after thinking is that the ideal of 18 years old still exists today. At the age of 40, the second innovation, it is not too late to start again. I firmly believe that people are great because of their dreams.

Reporter: There are risks in starting a business. Have you considered the risk of failure?

Lei Jun: From 1995 to today, I used 670 mobile phones. After using so many mobile phones, I was thinking, what kind of mobile phone do I want? Can you make a cell phone that belongs to an enthusiast? Especially after doing the mobile Internet, more and more people feel that this is the trend of the future. The mobile Internet is the product of hardware and software integration experience. I had a dream and wanted to make a mobile phone for fans.

I have confidence in the prospect of mobile Internet. And I think that using the Internet as a mobile phone is absolutely subversive. However, innovation is about doing things that others have not done. 99% of these things will fail, so I am quite embarrassed.

Entrepreneurship and cooperation don’t want millet to become “self-employed”

Reporter: The original 56 employees of Xiaomi invested a total of 11 million yuan. You are fully capable of investing in the full amount of your own money first, and then fighting for financing. Why?

Lei Jun: It's very simple. I don't want Xiaomi to be a company with one person in mine and become a “self-employed”, and my colleagues are willing to invest. In fact, when these colleagues expressed that they wanted to invest together, I was under great pressure. I want to start a business. I must be saving money myself. It is my own thing to lose. If so many colleagues lose money together, it will be very sad.

However, from another point of view, the entire company invests money together. Everyone has a sense of ownership and enthusiasm. Some of our earliest employees had a girl who graduated from graduate school. At first I thought she might not have much savings. But she sold all of her family's stock and sent an e-mail to her colleagues saying that she had taken out her dowry money and she had been married to Xiaomi.

Reporter: You said that now Xiaomi's suppliers and foundries are world-class. They serve Apple, Hewlett-Packard, etc. How did Xiaomi get their trust?

Lei Jun: In today's market conditions, no one vendor can make a good product out of the supplier. We have chosen a first-rate supplier, Qualcomm's CPU, and Sharp's display in Japan.

A high-end smart phone has nearly 900 components. Many important components are customized. Suppliers need to invest funds to develop with us. As a result, their requirements for buyers are naturally higher. When we talked to these suppliers, we hit a wall. A U.S. supplier allows us to provide financial reports for three years, and another company asks if you previously made mobile phones. In the face of these problems, my answer cannot be separated from "nothing." But we did not give up, and once we could not, we explained to them patiently twice or three times, including the risk of nuclear radiation becoming the first customer to visit Sharp after the earthquake, or asking people who are familiar with these suppliers to bring a message. Finally finally achieved their trust.

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