Dr. Barry Lam -- Bio

Barry Lam has been described as a maverick among Taiwanese businessmen. Barry was born and raised in Hong Kong, but moved to Taiwan to attend National Taiwan University, where he received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees. In 1973 he and some former classmates launched Kimpo, a maker of handheld calculators. Barry became president and built the company into the world's largest contract calculator maker. But by the late 1980s, Barry Lam was looking for new challenges. As technology for making flat-panel displays matured, he figured the next big thing would be notebook PCs. Unfortunately, as a minority shareholder of Kimpo, Barry couldn't persuade the company's directors to take a risk on these new computers so he quit and started Quanta in 1988. Within two years, the young company had attracted Siemens and Philips Electronics as customers, among others.

Quanta has continued to lead the industry in portable, ubiquitous electronic systems. While 2001 was a year to forget for almost everybody in the PC world, Quanta continued to grow. Back in 2000 Quanta produced a customized laptop computer in 72 hours; a year later—48 hours; today—less than 24 hours. Quanta had moved all its production to China. With annual turnover over US$33BN today, Quanta is one of the world’s leading providers of technology products and solutions to Fortune 500 companies such as Apple, HP, Dell, IBM, Sony and others. Quanta holds the distinction as the world’s largest manufacturer of laptop PCs, making over 1 in every 3 laptop PCs globally today. Quanta also provides a full array of mobile phones, mobile internet devices and servers and storage products. As Barry will tell you, Quanta’s success is made possible by the company’s ability to provide customers with high value added services from innovative product development, flexible manufacturing, real-time supply chain management to after sales service and support. Barry is convinced that product diversification and innovation will keep Quanta’s flexible manufacturing busy for years to come. With the dedication to technological innovation and education, Barry launched the $200M R&D center project, Quanta R&D Complex (QRDC), in Taiwan. With floor space of 2.2M square feet and a capacity to house up to 7,000 engineers, QRDC is being touted by many in Taiwan as the “Dreamland of R&D Engineers.” QRDC inaugurated in late 2005 which is the headquarter of Quanta Computer Inc.

In 2005, Quanta and MIT announced a five-year, $20M joint research collaboration project (“TParty”) aimed at developing the next generation of platforms for computing and communication beyond personal computers. Furthermore, Quanta are hoping to build closer ties with more worldwide research institutes, tackling some advanced research projects that complement the Quanta-MIT TParty project and help expand the vision to provide reliable, affordable access to the benefits of information and communications technologies to all the world’s citizens.

In both 1999 and 2001, Barry was chosen by Business Week as one of the fifty “Stars of Asia”. In 2002, he was highlighted on Business Week’s list of the top 25 managers of the year for his achievements in taking Quanta to the number 1 notebook maker in the world. In 2005, Barry received degree of doctor for technology honoris causa from Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Barry received Honorary Doctoral Degrees from National University (NTU) in 2007, and City University of Hong Kong (CityU) in 2011. In 2012, National Tsing-Hua University and National Chiao Tung University respectively had awarded an honorary doctorate to Barry to honor his outstanding achievement in the industry; his exemplary humanitarian spirit, and his efforts to promote art and literature.

Barry is also the Director of Cloud Gate Theatre Group and the Chairman of Quanta Education Foundation. The foundation has supported numerous charitable activities and promoted culture and arts to enrich people’s lives. From year 2008, Barry is the member and Convener of National Palace Museum Advisory Committee. He is the Chairman of Epoch Foundation since 2008 and joins current membership of MIT EECS visiting committee.

Back