CEO Departs as Kingsoft Cloud Plans Dual Primary Listing in Hong Kong
Kingsoft Cloud, an independent Chinese cloud services provider, announced on August 8 that Wang Yulin had resigned as CEO, a member of the board of directors and nominating and corporate governance committee, due to personal health concerns. The company affirmed that Wang’s departure will not affect the normal operation and management of the company.
After Wang resigned, Vice Chairman Zou Tao was appointed as acting CEO with immediate effect. Having joined Kingsoft Corporation in 1998, Zou has served as a director of the company since December 2016, and has served as Vice Chairman of the board since December 2018.
According to documents submitted by Kingsoft Cloud to the SEC, as of March 31, 2022, Kingsoft Corporation held 39%, Xiaomi held 12.3%, First Trust Portfolios L.P held 5.6% and Wang Yulin held 1.5%.
Kingsoft Cloud is a project propelled by Lei Jun, the founder of Xiaomi, after he became the chairman of Kingsoft. Since 2010, Lei Jun has devoted himself to Xiaomi ventures, but he returned as chairman in 2011, when Kingsoft encountered a huge crisis.
The motivation behind Kingsoft Cloud is that Lei believes that Kingsoft can’t just rely on its old business, and should also move forward. Lei says the mentality of striving for the upper reaches is the reason why Kingsoft goes forward at every stage.
Kingsoft Cloud was listed on the Nasdaq in May 2020, raising more than $500 million. At dinner that day, Lei Jun gifted Wang Yulin one kilogram of gold bricks, because he had previously agreed to send this to whoever makes a billion-dollar public company.
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Wang’s resignation comes as the company prepares for a dual primary listing in Hong Kong. On July 27, Kingsoft Cloud formally submitted an application for a listing on the HKEx, while continuing to maintain its major listing status and trading on the Nasdaq. As of March 31, 2022, it held cash and cash equivalents of 3.382 billion yuan ($500.56 million). According to Frost & Sullivan’s data, Kingsoft Cloud has been the largest independent cloud services provider in China from 2019 to 2021 in terms of revenue.