The Birth and Rebirth of Shenzhen

The city of Shenzhen, cradle of China's industrial revolution, is usually associated with impoverished migrant workers and cheerless gray factories churning out cheap toys, T shirts and sneakers for the world. While that gritty image represents Shenzhen's past, entrepreneur Pony Ma is a harbinger of its future. The 34-year-old Ma is an Internet tycoon with a fortune of nearly $500 million, thanks to the success of the Shenzhen company he founded in 1998, Tencent, China's largest instant-messaging service with 532 million registered users. The company's home is a tidy, landscaped campus where employees, the best and brightest from universities in Beijing...

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