Mountain climbing becomes commercial undertaking in China

Mountain climbing becomes commercial undertaking in China

Staff Reporter


The controversy surrounding Wang Jing, co-founder of a Chinese outdoor sporting goods brand, who took a helicopter for part of her Mount Everest climb, has exposed once again the prevalence of commercial mountain climbing and other sports in China, reports Guangzhou’s Time Weekly.

Wang Jing initially denied the claims before later admitting to Chinese media that she took a helicopter from the base camp to the second camp before climbing the last section to reach the top of Mount Everest on May 23.

The craze of commercial mountain climbing was initiated by Wang Shi, chairman of China Vanke, a leading realty firm, who was lauded for climbing Mt Everest at the age of 53 in May 2003. It prompted many other businesspeople to follow suit in order to forge an image of a modern entrepreneur, the paper said.

In addition to mountain climbing, some entrepreneurs have also engaged in adventurous expeditions or mountain cycling. However, it has become dubious whether they are fond of the sports or just using the acts as an instrument for brand promotion. This theory has once again found traction following the Wang Jing incident, Time Weekly said.

“Wang cheated in climbing Mt Everest, violating athletic ethics and undertaking falsified marketing, as she attempted to bolster her brand’s imaging by winning the identification of consumers with a story involving a female sports lover who overcame the world’s highest mountain against unfavorable odds,” Wu Shiling, chairman of Randonneurs of China, told the paper.

Many entrepreneurs have engaged in sports as a vehicle for socializing and business, with the purpose of pursuing a better quality of life only serving as a subordinate goal, the paper said.



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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 (, 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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