At the 92nd Academy Awards ceremony, the Korean film “Parasite” won four awards: Best Director, Best Film, Best International Film, and Best Original Screenplay. It was the first time that people presented the awards here. On the stage, I saw Lee Mi-kyung, the vice chairman of CJ Group as the producer and investor of this movie. She has made unimaginable efforts and patience to promote Korean movies and Hallyu culture to the world.
South Korean entrepreneur rating website CEO rankings (www.ceoscoredaily.com) announced the latest rankings of South Korea’s Top 500 companies at the end of 2019. The survey found that among the 676 business decision makers of these companies, only 8 were women 1.2% of the total number. Among them, if professional managers (such as the CEO of Coca-Cola Korea headquarters) are removed, the number of women who truly belong to private business owners is even rarer. Li Meijing, the chairman of CJ E&M under CJ Group, is one of them.
In fact, the proportion of women in East Asia (especially South Korea) in social and economic life is relatively low. According to the latest rankings of women’s participation rates in the social and economic activities of the 36 member states released by the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), South Korea ranks 32nd. It is particularly noteworthy that this rate has remained at 50% for 19 consecutive years. (59.4% in 2019), which means that the economic participation of Korean women has hardly increased significantly in the span of nearly 20 years.
On July 15, 2019, Dell released the “Women Entrepreneur Cities Index (Women Entrepreneur Cities Index) Report 2019” at the company’s annual Women Entrepreneur Network Summit launched in 2016. This index is based on global The 50 representative cities evaluate and rank the support and attractiveness of female entrepreneurs. In this ranking, the San Francisco Bay Area, New York, London, Boston and Los Angeles ranked in the top five in turn. There are four cities in China, namely Hong Kong (23rd), Taipei (26th), Beijing (38th) and Shanghai (47th). Seoul, the capital of South Korea, ranks 41st. It can be said that Korean women still face more difficulties in economic and social life, especially on the journey of starting a business, compared to women in other regions.
In fact, this ranking also illustrates another deeper social issue, which is the influence of history, traditional culture, and Confucianism on Korea. The author has lived in South Korea for nearly ten years, especially through the experience of holding different positions in two or three group companies in South Korea. I know that in such a society that is greatly influenced by Confucian culture, it also retains a better social background of Confucian culture. Among them, it is not easy for Korean women, especially women entrepreneurs who start their own businesses and women in the workplace. Unlike the process of Chinese society in the last century that advocated equality between men and women in the education stage and effectively implemented it at the institutional level, although Korean society began to accept Western culture and capitalist systems at almost the same time, it was derived from ancient China. Cultural thoughts have been deeply rooted in the thinking logic and even daily habits of Korean people. Therefore, in Korea today, Western equality thoughts have not affected Korean society in proportion to the introduction of the economic system, even from the Korean nation. To a large extent, Western ideology is actively rejected by Koreans.
Therefore, friends who frequently travel between China and South Korea or who are fans of Korean dramas will find that the three principles and five constants that often appear in Chinese historical dramas are still affecting the lives of Koreans. Of course, they also affect the social status of women. In the past ten years, due to family economic pressures, especially the increasing expenditure on education for their children, Korean women would choose to continue to work after marriage. However, in the previous decades, after marriage, they gave up working in South Korea where parents and children were raised. Women have always occupied the vast majority. In addition, even those women who always insist on working hard in the workplace are often subjected to various unfair treatments brought about by gender discrimination within the company, which will involve salary levels, promotion opportunities, recognition of work performance, and so on. This is the case in workplace life, not to mention the pressure that women who choose to start a business must bear and how small the chance of success should be. This article tells the stories of three Korean female entrepreneurs: Lee Mi-kyung, Chairman of CJ E&M under CJ Group, Kim Hae-ryeon, Chairman of Tae Kyung Group, and Zhao Sun-hye, Chairman of GOE-Young Group. The first two are representatives of family members who succeeded in traditional family businesses, and the latter is a representative of the first generation of female entrepreneurs, who rely on their unremitting efforts to achieve themselves and enterprises.
The third generation of Lee Mi Kyung’s family takes charge of the Korean media and entertainment aircraft carrier
CJ Group also has a Chinese name in China called Xijie. Although it belonged to the same group as Samsung Group before the end of the 1980s: CheilJedang Co., Ltd., but with the death of the old chairman Li Bingzhe who pioneered the entire industry, many of the group’s business groups were inherited by five children. Developed into the now well-known Samsung Group, CJ Group, New World Group, etc.
The eldest grandson of the old president Li Bingzhe, Lee Jae-hyun, and the eldest granddaughter, Lee Mi-kyung, are the two presidents of the CJ Group. Among them, the group company under the charge of Vice President Lee Mi-kyung is an entertainment media company with CJ E&M Co., Ltd. as its core. Not long ago, the Korean film “Parasite” won four awards at the 92nd Academy Awards, writing a glorious page for Korean films. As the producer and investor of this film, Li Meijing attended the awards ceremony and spoke on stage. For a long time, Lee Mi Kyung has made unimaginable efforts and patience to promote Korean movies and Hallyu culture to the world.
Although CJ Group occupies the No. 1 position in the market in industries that are closely related to the daily lives of Korean people, such as food, catering, logistics, bioengineering, entertainment and media in South Korea, it is based on the fact that the film and television media industry has high risks and business performance is affected by external factors. The bigger feature is that CJ E&M is a business group that the group needs to provide strong financial support every year. Moreover, the cultural industry itself is an industry that requires long-term investment on the one hand and slow profit growth on the other. Therefore, this requires the head of the company to have extraordinary strategic vision and continuous investment courage. Li Meijing is just such a woman.
Today’s Korean films have been recognized by filmmakers all over the world, including Hollywood. It can be said that they are brilliant, but the hardships of this road can only be experienced by those who are in it. CJ E&M invests, produces, and distributes about 30 films in South Korea every year on average, ranking first in number, but not every film can be successful. Li Meijing dared to try in an unfamiliar market. Even in the face of the dismal box office performance of certain films, she always maintained a calm mind and peace of mind. She does not judge a hero by one success or failure. Since 2013, CJ E&M has invested in China-Korea co-production films. The good box office of “Break Up”, “Return to Twenty”, “Big Shot” and other films in China have given her the best spirit of experimentation and patience. Return. The annual “China-Korea Film Festival” has lasted for more than ten years. It is under Li Meijing’s personal responsibility and hosted regardless of return. It has made great contributions to the cultural exchanges between China and South Korea. Recognized by the government departments of the two countries.
CJ E&M is also South Korea’s largest game development company. In addition to meeting domestic needs in South Korea, its twenty or thirty game studios also provide products and services for game companies in many countries. In 2014, Tencent invested US$500 million in its gaming subsidiary and became the third largest shareholder, working together to contribute to the explosive growth of China’s mobile game and online game markets. The 18 cable TV stations under CJ E&M have also spared no effort to introduce outstanding Chinese film and television dramas to Korean audiences, such as the popular “Langya List” and “Pretenders” in the past two years. All these are inseparable from Li Meijing’s strategic vision and perseverance in long-term development.
Li Meijing is a woman who likes Chinese history and culture very much. She visits China every year to inspect the group’s investment and development in China, and visits many good friends in China. She said this during a meeting with old friends in the Chinese diplomatic community. “The friendship between South Korea and China has a long history. We belong to the cultural circle of Chinese characters, and we are also influenced by Confucian culture, just like brothers in the family. And we have our own strengths. China has a vast territory and abundant resources. but big Korean creativity and tenacity, we always use our wisdom to keep that complement each other, hand in hand, then, Asian culture has become the world’s high time the light just around the corner. ”
Jinhai Lian female inherited his father’s business took over the day of the return of the fashion industry possessions
Thai Virgin Group’s predecessor was founded in 1975 Tae Kyung industry, after the founder of Jinrong Huan years of operation, gradually developed into a professional manufacturer of chemical raw materials group of companies. After the death of Jin Ronghuan in 2014, the successor daughter Jin Hailian returned from the fashion industry to the industry run by her father, focusing on the investment in the field of daily chemical raw materials. In just a few years, Jin Hailian led the company’s technical team to unremittingly devote itself to the research and development of basic cosmetic raw materials, and successfully developed its own nano-zinc oxide products and nano-titanium dioxide products. With these two products, Taijing broke the Japanese company Long-term monopoly market structure, and quickly occupied the Korean market, especially in 2019 due to the tension of diplomatic relations between South Korea and Japan, Japan unilaterally restricted the export of raw materials to South Korea in the critical period, included in the restricted list of domestically produced nano titanium dioxide on the market It can be said to have won glory for South Korea and the Koreans.
In fact, as the only daughter of the Kim family who did not inherit her father’s business from the very beginning, Kim Hae-ryeon has already made her mark in the fashion industry more than 30 years ago, founded her own clothing brand ADRIENNE, and opened Korea’s first clothing online store “Fashion” Plus”, she wrote a book to introduce Korean fashion trends and marketing strategies. Not only that, she also served as a professor of business management at Ewha Womans University and a member of the Samsung C&T Advisory Board. It can be said that a wealth of experience has laid a solid foundation for her daughter to inherit her father’s business and achieve success. When she just switched from the fashion industry to the daily chemical industry, she determined to make up for her professional knowledge and spent a full two years from the basic knowledge. Started to learn, asked R&D personnel for advice, worked overtime with employees, and led the company to continuous success with the will to never give up, and won the respect of the industry.
”Although the respect for women in Korean society has been greatly improved recently, there will still be many women like me who will feel that there is a transparent ceiling covering our heads. If we want to change this situation, we cannot just wait for social consciousness. We should actively prove ourselves through our own efforts.” Jin Hailian said in a media interview.
Jo Sun-hye, the female entrepreneur with the most “innovative DNA”, snowballed her career with innovation.
In May 2019, the news that the US-based Blackstone Group became a shareholder of Geo-Young, Korea’s largest wholesale drug distributor, spread throughout South Korea through this transaction Geo-Young sold 46% of its shares for nearly 100 million U.S. dollars, making it the largest attempt by the Korean pharmaceutical industry to introduce strategic investors in recent years.
Geo-Young Co., Ltd. was established in 2002. Founder Zhao Shanhui started from scratch at the age of 36. In less than 20 years, he developed the company into the largest distributor of medicines and medical devices in the field of medicine distribution and medicine logistics in Korea. Currently, Geo-Young provides services to more than 250 multinational and domestic pharmaceutical and medical equipment companies, and provides retail medicines to approximately 14,000 pharmacies and 50 major hospitals in Korea, with a market share of approximately 70% of the Korean pharmaceutical retail market.
Zhao Sun-hye, who studied at the School of Pharmacy at Sookmyung Women’s University in South Korea in the 1980s, became an ordinary pharmacist at Incheon Hospital after graduation. During her work, she found that the sales network of many Korean pharmaceutical companies was backward and the quality of sales staff There are also many problems, unable to provide patients with safe and fast medication protection, so she resolutely left the profession that is very enviable in the eyes of Korean women and devoted herself to the pharmaceutical distribution industry, and established Geo-Young.
In the Korean pharmaceutical industry, Zhao Shanhui is known as the most “innovative DNA” female entrepreneur. She pioneered a professional online drug inventory information network in South Korea to ensure that sales staff can understand the latest inventory information of drug logistics centers in various regions anytime and anywhere, and order by themselves through the automated ordering platform, which not only avoids dealers from hoarding, but also reduces the circulation. Unnecessary inventory waste plays a role of killing two birds with one stone. With a series of process innovations, Geo-Young quickly occupied the market and maintained a long-term competitive advantage.
Zhao Shanhui once combined his own experience to give such advice to women who start a business. “No matter the setbacks in life or career are always unavoidable, women will bring more difficulties to overcome them. The process of constantly falling and rising, falling and rising again, makes our horizons wider. Judgment is also gradually enhanced, and will eventually create a distinctive leadership. Just like when we are to make a big snowball, it is not easy to hold the snow and try to form a ball at first, but as long as you don’t give up, once a After the little snowball, as long as you roll it to the ground, it will easily get bigger and bigger, and the career is the same.”
After introducing the ups and downs of the well-known business women entrepreneurs in South Korea, I can’t help but remind me of the survey report on the female entrepreneur city index cited at the beginning of the article. I found that even the No. 1 San Francisco Bay Area scored only 63.7 points in the total score of 100. This shows that even in European and American countries, female entrepreneurs still face many male entrepreneurs in the process of developing their businesses. Unimaginable obstacles, cities still have much room for improvement in supporting and attracting female entrepreneurs. If the government and social organizations provide women with more financial support including financing, leadership training and skill development, deployment of human resources, etc., then the new women of the 21st century will surely create wealth beyond imagination for this society And social value.