Haas Board member Hsioh Kwang Wu has given $1 million to the school to create a new fellowship fund for distinguished business graduates from China to study here.
The Hsioh Kwang Wu Family Fellowship Fund, which Wu established on his birthday in April, will be used to support two fellows a year from China to study at the Haas School through its executive education and other programs. Wu is the founder, executive chairman, and CEO of Singapore-based Straco Corp., a developer and operator of tourism-related businesses, including the Shanghai Ocean Aquarium, one of the world's largest indoor aquariums that was built at a cost of $50 million.
Wu joined the Haas Board, the advisory board for the dean and Haas School, in 2009.
"We are deeply grateful for the generosity and dedication that Hsioh Kwang Wu has shown to the Haas School since becoming a board member just one year ago," says Dean Rich Lyons. "His gift will enable Berkeley-Haas to build even richer connections with Asia as the region's importance continues to grow in the business world."
The creation of the Wu Family Fellowship Fund comes as Dean Lyons has made a strategic commitment to expand the Haas School’s global footprint, most immediately in Asia, as a result of Berkeley and the San Francisco Bay Area’s historic ties to the region. Wu has taken an active role in that effort as a member of the Haas School's advisory board, which he joined last year, and as an advisory board member of the school's Asia Business Center, which launched in 2008 and will hold a conference on "Leading Through Innovation in Asia" in Shanghai on March 22, 2011.
“Berkeley has always been for me a byword for excellence in teaching and research. In these recent years, I have been very fortunate to become acquainted with the school through a growing friendship with leaders and members of the Haas community," says Wu.
"I have been especially impressed by the efforts of the Haas School of Business, led by Dean Rich Lyons, to further expand its global footprint by reaching out to the growing talent in Asia," Wu adds. "This Fellowship Fund represents my commitment to that cause and to Dean Lyons’ vision for the school. I am confident that Haas will build on this new beginning to chart new paths for Berkeley in Asia.”
Wu was an early investor in China, beginning in the 1980s. As China began liberalizing trade and investment policies, Wu began developing large-scale tourism projects in such cities as Shanghai, Xi'an, and Xiamen. The projects involved the preservation and reconstruction of famous heritage sites in China.
In 2004, Wu consolidated his tourism projects in China to launch a public-listing company in Singapore. As founder and executive chairman of the company, Straco Corp., he built the first Singapore-listed company whose core business is in tourism-related projects in China.
Wu is a council member of the Singapore Chinese Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the standing committee of the Chinese Association of Enterprises with Foreign Investment. He earned a bachelor of commerce degree from Nanyang University, which awarded him the Nanyang Alumni Achievement Award in 2008.