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A-Team Profile — Robert Wu

Published May 9, 2008

AGE: 44
COMPANY: KMC
OCCUPATION: General Manager

How much chain have KMC’s factories churned out the company’s three-decade history? Enough to loop around the earth and the moon three times.

Any way you look at it, that’s a lot of chain. Put another way, KMC makes more than 150 million meters of bicycle, motorcycle, industrial and automotive chains every year. That’s more than 93,000 miles worth—enough to wrap the equator nearly four times. It is one of the world’s largest chain manufacturers.

Overseeing this is Robert Wu, whose father, Charles, founded KMC in 1977 and remains president of the KMC Group. Wu, who earned his MBA from National Sun Yat-Sen University, has spent 21 years with the company. Today, KMC is a $170 million operation with sales in more than 130 countries and nearly 4,500 employees.

Based in the southern Taiwan county of Tainan, KMC has been making bicycle chains since its founding. In 1986, KMC began a partnership with Shimano, for whom it still manufactures chain.

In 2004, KMC created a new R&D team to branch out into other products. It recently launched the “Dr. Rider” line of LED lights, alarms, cycle computers, Bluetooth wireless devices, and motors and controllers for electric bikes.

KMC has a total of 11 factories around the world, including two in Tainan County, four in China and one in Vietnam.

Robert Wu, a golfer and cyclist, is married to Margrett Lai. The Wus have two children: Frankie, 13, and Earnie, 11.

—Doug McClellan

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