Trickle-down economics, but from a Chinese company, not an American one? As U.S. workers languish with salaries that many say stagnated since the Reagan years, the chief executive of Lenovo has said that he will share $3.25 million from his latest bonus with about 10,000 employees in China and 19 other countries, the USA Today reported on Monday.
Lenovo recently overtook HP to become the world's largest producer of personal computers. In the U.S., the company is best known for acquiring IBM Corp.'s ThinkPad laptop brand and the rest of its PC business in 2005.
Spokeswoman Angela Lee confirmed that Yang Yuanqing, who is also Lenovo's chairman, would "Share his wealth." She said that between 8,500 and 9,000 of the staff who will receive bonuses are in China, with the rest in the U.S., Japan and other countries. All will receive the same amount and all hourly manufacturing staff will receive a payment.
The generosity, though, will hardly hurt Yang's wallet. In its annual review last year, Lenovo raised Yang's base pay to $1.2 million and awarded him a $4.2 million discretionary bonus and a $8.9 million long-term incentive award. Yang owns 7.12 percent of Lenovo's shares, which is equivalent to about $720 million at current prices.
A translated message on Lenovo's official account on China's Sina Weibo microblogging service (a Twitter clone) said:
Such a good humane boss; are you jealous?
Although it is now the largest manufacturer of PCs globally, Lenovo also sees the mobile writing on the wall. According to IDC, it became the world's fourth-largest producer of smartphones and tablets in the last quarter.