Head of another Taobao online retail outlet dies due to overwork at age 36

Head of another Taobao outlet dies due to overwork

Staff Reporter 2013-07-19


Wu Lijun was 36. (Internet photo)

Wu Lijun, who was president of Yunifang, an online retailer that sells mud masks and skincare products on Taobao, one of China’s largest e-commerce platforms, died on July 15. The cause of death is suspected to be overwork, a situation that is becoming worringly common among people who earn their living by selling goods online, reports the Beijing Youth Daily, the official newspaper of the Communist Youth League committee in Beijing. Yunifang had become the leading seller of cosmetic mask products on Taobao after only six months on the platform. The retailer was later listed on Taobao’s top 50 outlets. Wu died due to a brain condition in Changsha in south-central China at the age of only 36. There have been several cases of death due to overwork in the online retail sector. Taobao reportedly conducted a survey into the health of 74 of their retails and are said to have found the results worrying. The earlier death of a 24-year-old Taobao retailer in Hangzhou was the first to prompt discussion about how hard people in the industry were working to sell tehir goods and promote their outlet. Taobao posted an official expression of condolences on that occasion and reminded its retailers to take care of their health. It has been taken for granted that to succeed in the emerging e-commerce business, it is necessary to work hard and for long hours to process and shipp orders and ensure customers are satisfied. Overwork has become an acknowledged feature of the industry.

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Kee Koon Boon (“KB”) is the co-founder and director of HERO Investment Management which provides specialized fund management and investment advisory services to the ARCHEA Asia HERO Innovators Fund (www.heroinnovator.com), the only Asian SMID-cap tech-focused fund in the industry. KB is an internationally featured investor rooted in the principles of value investing for over a decade as a fund manager and analyst in the Asian capital markets who started his career at a boutique hedge fund in Singapore where he was with the firm since 2002 and was also part of the core investment committee in significantly outperforming the index in the 10-year-plus-old flagship Asian fund. He was also the portfolio manager for Asia-Pacific equities at Korea’s largest mutual fund company. Prior to setting up the H.E.R.O. Innovators Fund, KB was the Chief Investment Officer & CEO of a Singapore Registered Fund Management Company (RFMC) where he is responsible for listed Asian equity investments. KB had taught accounting at the Singapore Management University (SMU) as a faculty member and also pioneered the 15-week course on Accounting Fraud in Asia as an official module at SMU. KB remains grateful and honored to be invited by Singapore’s financial regulator Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS) to present to their top management team about implementing a world’s first fact-based forward-looking fraud detection framework to bring about benefits for the capital markets in Singapore and for the public and investment community. KB also served the community in sharing his insights in writing articles about value investing and corporate governance in the media that include Business Times, Straits Times, Jakarta Post, Manual of Ideas, Investopedia, TedXWallStreet. He had also presented in top investment, banking and finance conferences in America, Italy, Sydney, Cape Town, HK, China. He has trained CEOs, entrepreneurs, CFOs, management executives in business strategy & business model innovation in Singapore, HK and China.

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