Inside Elitegroup Computer Systems: From Taipei to Shen Zhenby Kristopher Kubicki on October 4, 2003 12:39 PM EST
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Getting down to the politics of the situation, the partnership between PC Chips and ECS is actually slightly complicated. For those of you who don’t quite know the situation between China and Taiwan, let us take a crash course in Chinese politics. China technically considers Taiwan as a “rogue state,” and thus, it does not allow Taiwanese citizens and companies the same rights as Chinese. The PC Chips CEO, Johnson Chiang, is a Taiwanese citizen and may not own Chinese factories, offices, etc. In the early 90’s, PC Chips became one of the first motherboard companies to spin off a motherboard production factory, which is actually its own company, in mainland China.
Edit: Joseph Yu, our tour guide for the ECS factory provided us with a few details we got wrong: Mr. Johnson Chiang became one of the major shareholders of ECS in 1998 while he was Chairman of PC CHIPS. But, this was Mr. Chiang's personal investment. In fact, Pou chen Group, the world's leading shoe maker who design & OEM for Nike, Rebook, and Adidas, is the biggest shareholder of ECS (13.56% in 2002). Precisely speaking, Mr. Chiang became Chairman of ECS in 1998, but did not take over ownership of ECS. Due to Mr. Chiang's relationship toward this two companies, ECS and PC CHIPS began their cooperation on manufacturing since then. From legal aspect, these two are still independent companies.