Yi Wang is founder and CEO of Liulishuo (a.k.a. LingoChamp), China’s leading mobile learning platform for spoken English with over 70 million users. It uses speech recognition technology to enhance the learning experience and provide learners with measurable and proven results. Within a few months of launch, Liulishuo rose to the top of the Apple app store in China, and was recently ranked by CB Insights as one of the 100 most promising artificial intelligence startups in the world in 2018.
Yi is a “sea turtle” (海归, overseas returnee) who returned to China after studying and working in the US. He received his Ph.D in computer science from Princeton University in 2009 and MSE and BE in electronic engineering from Tsinghua University. Before founding Liulishuo in 2012, Yi was a product manager at Google’s headquarters in Mountain View from 2009 to 2011. Yi has also worked as a product director at AdChina, responsible for its performance ads platform.
In this episode, we discuss questions like: Why did Yi choose to leave his comfortable job in Silicon Valley to start a new venture in China? What challenges must “sea turtles” overcome to successfully start a company in China? What makes Liulishuo so engaging to its millions of users? Will AI ever replace human teachers?