Honorary University Fellow (2014)
Mr Gan Chee Eng was born in Malaysia and graduated from the Ngee Ann Polytechnic in Singapore in 1980 majoring in Mechanical Engineering. He holds a Certificate from the Executive Program in International Management jointly awarded by Stanford University in the United States, and the National University of Singapore in 2002.
Spanning three decades, Mr Gan’s upward career trajectory has consisted of diverse, yet ultimately integrated, posts in commodity and raw materials production, manufacturing and management; and, after 1993, a distinguished career in manufacturing operations, brand management, general management, and senior leadership roles, at Amway (Greater China), culminating in his role as President of Amway Greater China in 2009.
Most notably, under Mr Gan’s visionary leadership, Amway Greater China, a key subsidiary of the American multinational direct-selling company, has sustained robust and sustainable business growth in the region with reported sales reaching US$5.23 billion in 2013. Today, Amway (China) Co., Ltd. is the largest affiliate of Amway globally. Moreover, the Amway factory in Guangzhou, Guangdong province, established and operated under Mr Gan’s supervision, has become the company’s largest manufacturing base outside the United States. Better business practices introduced by Mr Gan at Amway have been recognized throughout the industry. The Harvard Business Review (China) distinguished his work at Amway with the Best Practice Award in 2011. Mr Gan’s business achievements and his efforts in social and economic development on behalf of diverse communities have earned him numerous other honours as well. In 2010, he received the Magnolia Memorial Award from the Shanghai Municipal People’s Government. In 2011, he was awarded the title of “Most Valuable Manager in China’s Direct-selling”. In 2012, he was recognised as an Honorary Citizen of Guangzhou for his outstanding contributions to that city. In April 2014, he was awarded “The Great Wall Friendship Award” from Beijing Government.
It is fitting that Mr Gan’s successful career in business has brought him to philanthropic work where he can bring his tremendous vision and success at organizational management to the task of helping others. He has been a particular friend and supporter of Hong Kong Baptist University, including having contributed a major donation, in the name of the “Amway Development Fund” to the recently founded “HKBU Jao Tsung-I Academy of Sinology” in support of the publications of the Academy.
Beyond the University, Mr Gan—in his roles, first, as Vice-Chairman and, now, as Chairman of the Amway Charity Foundation (ACF) has promoted children’s welfare in China with a focus on nutrition, educational aid and social integration. Mr. Gan has provided personal guidance and a passionate commitment to specific ACF programmes. By the end of June 2014, for example, the ACF raised donations equivalent to US$ 23.63 million on behalf of specific initiatives, resulting in the construction of 1,705 kitchens and 88 libraries benefitting some 1,350,000 children. In April 2012, the Spring Sprout Project, dedicated to improving the nutrition of boarding students in rural schools, was named the Most Influential Charity Project by the Ministry of Civil Affairs of the People’s Republic of China. Likewise, Mr Gan’s commitment to China’s future leadership continues as he brings the leaders of tomorrow into dialogue with better business development and good-governance practices regionally, nationally, and globally.
In sum, his visionary understanding of how effective local leadership contributes to national well-being for the future, his commitment to our University in the form of nurturing future leadership and the scholarly enterprise, and his tremendous impact overall on society as a whole make Mr Gan Chee Eng an exemplary candidate for the Honorary University Fellowship.