Source: AIO News
Author: Xinyu, AK
In 2018, it was a year when the cryptocurrency market went from its highest point in a bull market to its lowest point in a bear market. On January 8th alone, the price of Bitcoin dropped from $16,000 to around $2,000. At the time, there was a joke that "there are now many millionaires on the street, but these people used to be billionaires."
But in this trough, there is a company brewing a magnificent breakthrough.
Ji'an Technology rings the bell for listing on NASDAQ
On November 21, 2019, Canaan Technology rang the bell for its listing on NASDAQ, and the "first stock of blockchain" was born. According to the recollections of participants, Canaan Technology's listing created two "NASDAQ records" at the time - the largest number of people present at the bell-ringing ceremony and the largest number of viewers of the live listing. Whether in China or abroad, for blockchain practitioners or investors, Canaan's successful listing was no less than a nuclear bomb, causing a sensation in the Chinese blockchain community and giving countless Buidlers in the cold winter a shot in the arm.
Behind this milestone event, there is an important figure who played a crucial role - Kong Jianping (former co-chairman of Jia Nan Technology, now founder and chairman of Nano Labs). As the first episode of "AIO News Person" column, this article will focus on Kong Jianping as the protagonist, taking you on a close-up look at his personal story.
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Kong Jianping, English name Jack Kong, was born in 1985 in Shaoxing, Zhejiang. In the autumn of 2004, 19-year-old Kong Jianping came to Wenzhou University to study law through the college entrance examination, starting his rich and fulfilling college life. The seed of entrepreneurship was quietly planted during this period.
"I don't want to ask for money from my family anymore, I can do it myself," explained Kong Jianping years later about his university entrepreneurial career. "But because I didn't have much work experience in the beginning, I could only start with the 'milk delivery' activity of the school club's work-study program." He would wake up at five or six in the morning every day and go to the school dormitories to deliver milk. Although a bottle of milk was only a few cents, it was still a small income for Kong Jianping, and it also changed his habit of sleeping in. Most importantly, he finally took the first step. After a long preparation, Kong Jianping founded his own campus studio, Hongtuo Studio, in his junior year. In his spare time, Kong Jianping often took the bus to the city and off-campus institutions to communicate. After many discussions, he successfully introduced campus training projects such as driving school training and accounting professional training to the studio. After more than a year of hard work, the studio developed rapidly, with monthly income reaching millions of yuan at one point, and Hongtuo Studio became one of the most profitable studios in the school at that time."
"There is no absolute conflict between most professions and entrepreneurship. For entrepreneurs, they should seize opportunities and work hard. " Kong Jianping's past entrepreneurial experiences have given him more courage. "It's still far from enough now." Finally, after graduating in law, Kong Jianping decided to start a business. "Maybe I can create a bigger career, even create a new world and civilization." A seemingly unrealistic seed filled with idealism officially took root in Kong Jianping's heart and accompanied him towards the future.
In 2013, Canaan Technology invented the world's first Bitcoin ASIC miner - "Avalon Generation 1". At that time, the price of Bitcoin skyrocketed from $13 to over $1000, and Kong Jianping purchased an old Avalon Generation 1 miner from the second-hand market.
The world's first Bitcoin ASIC miner
At the end of that year, the Bitcoin market was like a roller coaster, soaring high and then suddenly plummeting, causing many speculators to suffer heavy losses. Obviously, this mining machine did not make Kong Jianping any money, but instead caused him to lose a lot. "Although I lost a lot of money at the time, I felt that this industry had great potential. The future of humanity must go through a profound blockchain revolution, and this decentralized blockchain technology will overturn various industries in society, and the revolution has already begun." Based on this extreme belief, Kong Jianping, despite his early losses, still invested in Canaan Technology in 2015 and continued to increase his investment, becoming the company's third largest shareholder and entering the core management team.
As the earliest manufacturer of ASIC mining machines in the world, in 2015, Kong Jianping made a bold statement in his circle of friends, "I want to grow the company to a value of 100 billion." Many friends thought it was too idealistic and believed that having 1 billion would already be good enough. However, with the development of the Jia Nan AI chip business in 2016, two years later, in 2017, Jia Nan Technology's valuation in the industry quickly surpassed 100 billion. On August 8, 2018, Jia Nan Technology first achieved mass production of 7nm ASIC mining machine chips, which was one month earlier than Huawei's release. In September, the first generation of artificial intelligence chips, Kendryte (model K210), also achieved mass production, making it the world's first commercial chip based on edge computing RISC-V. As of June 30, 2019, Jia Nan was the second largest manufacturer of Bitcoin mining machines in the world. During the same period, the Bitcoin mining machines sold by Jia Nan accounted for 21.9% of the total computing power of all Bitcoin mining machines sold globally.
Looking back on the road of entrepreneurship, Kong Jianping humbly attributed all of this to "coincidence". "We were just lucky to encounter the great development of the entire industry when it was still unknown and unrecognized, which allowed us to achieve today's scale and achievements." However, Kong Jianping emphasized that "of course, you also need enough faith to persevere." In this way, the first seed of the blockchain industry was planted ten years ago, quickly taking root and sprouting, not only becoming a towering tree in the sky, but also leading to the birth of a forest. And the listing of the "first stock of blockchain" not only pushed the blockchain industry towards the mainstream world, but also pointed out a new direction for many confused companies in the industry at that time.
In 2020, Kong Jianping left Jia Nan Technology after his term as co-chairman of the board and director expired. He then founded Nano Labs (hereinafter referred to as Microtech) with his friend Sun Qifeng, planting a new seed in the world of his dreams, just like he did when he was young.
In his public letter, Kong Jianping expressed that "In the era of the Metaverse, there may be an unprecedented explosion of innovative opportunities in human history, and innovation in the Metaverse will be born every second! The Metaverse will be the crucible and touchstone of human technological innovation! We believe that the Metaverse is a new era of human civilization. Perhaps my understanding of the Metaverse is still naive, with too many imprints of the material world, but the best way to predict the future is to create it, and we will continue to work hard. Salute to Satoshi Nakamoto, thank you for this great era!"
Perhaps when spoken by others, all of this seems like a fantasy. But when this seemingly unrealistic "idealism" is combined with Kong Jianping's spirit of practice, it may really be possible to become a reality. Nowadays, Kong Jianping is leading the team of Mawei Technology to work towards the ambitious dream of "weaving the underlying network of the metaverse".
As a provider of underlying infrastructure services in the metaverse industry, Haowei Technology's core goal is clear: to provide solid infrastructure construction for Web3 and the metaverse track, and become the "Power of Metaverse". Haowei Technology lived up to expectations, achieving a revenue of 39.44 million yuan in its second year of establishment, and a $20 million equity financing led by Yongwan Capital, with Hashkey and other digital investors following suit. What's even more impressive is that in just two years, on July 12, 2022, Nano Labs successfully went public on NASDAQ, with a market value reaching as high as $637 million.
After Nano Labs went public, it successively incubated new businesses such as iPollo 3D elastic computing network and Pineapple 3D printing. iPollo provides low-cost and efficient computing services for the metaverse track, while Pineapple 3D printing turns blueprints and IPs in the metaverse into physical objects, integrating them into people's real lives.
This new sapling has clearly grown up.
Hong Kong Chief Executive Carrie Lam exchanges views on the Metaverse with Nano Labs founder Kong Jianping
Since its establishment in 2013, Jianping Kong has led the new entrepreneurial team of Nano Labs after experiencing the precipitation of years and the baptism of setbacks. He still constantly looks to the future as an "idealist" and always practices it. Life is not just about the present, but also about poetry and distance. "Idealism" is not the patent of a certain generation or a certain type of person, but when dreams really reflect reality, every story that belongs to it is enough to be respected. It should be noted that in this rapidly changing and flourishing era, only by truly moving forward can there be real surprises.
Now, Kong Jianping is traveling around the world for the development of the Chinese Web3 industry, and his efforts have been recognized by the industry. In April 2023, Kong Jianping was officially appointed as a director of Hong Kong Cyberport by the Hong Kong government, adding a new responsibility to his shoulders and helping China's Web3, represented by Hong Kong, seize the new global heights.
"The best time to plant a tree was 10 years ago, the second best time is now."
The story of Kong Jianping and Web3 continues.