William Lei Ding is the founder and CEO of NetEase, a game portal. He made essential contributions in mainland China to the development of computer networks. According to Forbes’ China Rich List 2015, with an estimated fortune of $10.6 billion, he is the 10th wealthiest person in China. In late 2015, Lei was looking to invest in the property sector. Lei traveled to Zimbabwe and the United Kingdom in December. In China, he was the wealthiest man at one point.
Early Life and Education
Ding Lei was born on 1st October 1971 in Fenghua, Ningbo, Zhejiang Province. He completed his graduation and earned bachelor’s degree from University of Electronic Science and Technology of China.
Ding Lei married to Wang Xunfang.
After graduation he first worked in Ningbo in a local state department as an engineer. He went to Guangzhou to work for Sybase there. In the year of 1997, he founded NetEase as China’s first Internet entrepreneurs with about a dozen employees and became the richest person in 2003 in Chinese mainland (7.6 billion yuan).
Lei’s net worth is estimated to be $5.2 billion, according to the Hurun Report 2013. He turned NetEase into one of the world’s largest online and mobile game firms, with over 8,000 employees. The firm trades on the Nasdaq. Early on he launched China’s first dual-language, free e-mail service which became a catalyst for the rise of the Internet in China. In the U.S. NetEase licenses games from Blizzard Entertainment. For the iPad in China, in 2014 it released Blizzard’s Hearthstone: Heroes of Warcraft. In 2015 NetEase declared it plans to adapt its prosperous Chinese games for Western markets and had opened a U.S. headquarters south of San Francisco.
Since July 1999, William Lei Ding has served as a director and since November 2005, as Chief Executive Officer. From 2001 until 2005, Mr. Ding served as Chief Architect. He also served as Acting Chief Executive and Operating Officer in 2001. Mr. Ding also stepped down as Chairman of the board of directors. From 1999 until 2001, Mr. Ding served as Co-Chief Technology Officer and interim Chief Executive Officer. Mr. Ding created Guangzhou NetEase in May 1997. After enrolling in University of Electronic Science and Technology of China, Mr. Ding obtained Bachelor of Science degree in Communication Technology.
Since November 2007, Lei was working as a Vice President of Shanghai Automotive Industry Corporation. Until February 2011, he served as Chief General Manager of Shanghai General Motors and as Vice President of SAIC Motor Corporation. He also served as chief of the Department of Shanghai Volkswagen and an engineer of Quality Assurance Department. He was managing Quality Group of Pudong Sedan Project Team. He worked as Manager of Purchasing Dept, Vice Manager of Quality Assurance Dept., and Chief of Quality Engineering Section. He also worked as a manager of Tech. & Quality Dept. of SAIC. Since February 22, 2011, he served as the Director and Chairman of Shanghai Zhangjiang Hi-Tech Park Development. He worked as the Executive Director of Rivera and Chairman of the Board from 2011 to 2014. He serves as a Director of Leader City and MicroPort Medical Limited. From 2011 to 2013, he worked as a Non-executive Director at MicroPort Scientific Corporation. He is a CPC member.