Bo Shao was born and grew up in Shanghai, China. When he was four, his father taught him mathematics by training him to add up a deck of poker cards, as his family was too poor to buy any other tools. After practicing dozens of times a day, by the time he was twelve, he could add up a deck of 52 cards in 12 seconds. He went on to win over a dozen high school mathematics competitions in China.
During his junior year of high school, Bo was admitted to Harvard University with full scholarship. He was one of the first to go to Harvard University directly from mainland China with such a scholarship since 1949. “When I was applying in 1990, everyone thought it was impossible. Since then, Harvard has admitted two or three students every year from China on full scholarships. It taught me that if one works hard, and believes in himself, and with a bit of luck, he can achieve things beyond his wildest dreams.”
After working in the Boston Consulting Group in Boston and obtaining an MBA from Harvard Business School, Bo went back to China in 1999 and started EachNet, an online marketplace. “My parents thought I was nuts, to turn down very lucrative job offers and the chance of getting a green card” Bo recalls, “I was very naïve and totally unprepared for business in general and the huge challenges of bootstrapping a startup in particular.”
After four years, after a lot of trial and error and through the boom and bust of the Internet industry, Bo and his team persevered and built EachNet to become the largest consumer e-commerce site in China. EachNet was acquired by eBay for USD $225 million in a landmark transaction in 2003. The Asian Venture Capital Journal named Bo the Entrepreneur of the Year in 2003.
Bo focuses on helping entrepreneurs build promising businesses in China. Bo says, “Being the CEO and founder of a startup is a very lonely job. An entrepreneur feels incredible responsibility to his team, his customers, and his investors. Sometimes it feels like every decision could make or sink the company, but there is no guidebook or right answer. Everyone looks to him for answers, but he has no one to share his worries with.” Bo likes to get involved in the early stage of a company, become a partner and resource for the founders, and use his experience to help founders.
Assistant: Yvonne Xiao
LEXIN (NASDAQ: LX)
BabyTree Inc. (HK: 6100)
Liepin (HK: 6100)
Anjuke Inc. (Acquired by 58.com)
Nuance Biotech Inc.
EachNet.com, Founder and Chief Executive
NovaMed Pharmaceuticals, Inc., Cofounder
Nuance Biotech Inc., Cofounder
Parent Lab, Cofounder
Evolve Foundation, Cofounder and Chairman
B.A. in Physics and Electrical Engineering, Summa Cum Laude, Harvard University
MBA, Harvard Business School
Entrepreneur of the Year 2003, The Asian Venture Capital Journal
Young Global Leader of the World Economic Forum