If you want to highlight the world’s most successful women, it’s impossible to leave out China. The country not only boasts the highest number of female self-made billionaires, but has countless female leaders in business, the arts, sports, and media.
In order to highlight their stories, Sun Media Group owner Yang Lan (who is often referred to in American media as “China’s Oprah”) is launching a Chinese version of the AOL-partnered U.S. site MAKERS, a digital platform featuring video interviews with notable women including Sheryl Sandberg and Hillary Clinton. The Chinese-language Makers.cn will start out with 10 famous Chinese women, including China Stock Exchange Chair Laura Cha Shih May-Lung, actress Gong Li, and Olympics speed-skating silver medalist Li Yan.
“The younger generation of women are growing up very quickly and they are the most empowered generation so far,” said Yang at a recent press event for the site in New York. “About half of our college students are women, about one third of business owners and entrepreneurs in China are women. Half of the 10 wealthiest self-made women in the world are mainland Chinese.”
Yang proposed teaming up with the initiative after she was featured on the English-language site thanks to her own remarkable career trajectory. After serving as the host of several TV shows including the influential in-depth interview program Yang Lan Studio, Yang began her role as the head of a media empire when she acquired Sun TV in 2000. As China’s ambassador for Beijing’s bid for the 2008 Olympic games, she has made it on to Forbes’ list of the 100 most powerful Chinese women. In 2009, she made her foray into the luxury industry when she teamed up with singer Celine Dion to found LAN Fine Jewellery.
In conjunction with the new site, MAKERS will also be launching a mobile app for women to make their own videos. “Millions of women get to tell the story about those extraordinary figures around them—their grandma, their aunt, or their sister—just by putting those stories and videos into formatted software so those stories can be shared by millions of other people,” said Yang. She will be handpicking pieces daily to feature daily on her TV show Her Village, a talk show geared toward urban Chinese women.