The big picture

William Wang has never been short on vision. So when Irvine-based VIZIO Inc. surged past established household names like
Sony and Samsung to become the largest seller of flat-panel LCD
televisions in North America, VIZIO’s founder and CEO wasn’t
shocked. It was all part of the plan.

“When I started this business, I believed we could do the things
we’re doing today,” he says. “I’m a dreamer, I guess.”

Wang’s plan was simple — create a great product at an affordable price. That strategy struck a chord with consumers, because
although many people were eager to experience high-definition
TV, the technology was still very expensive. VIZIO’s lean business
model allowed the company to sell a product made with the
same components as its foreign competitors’ products but for a
lower price.

As a result, VIZIO has experienced astonishing growth. Wang
founded VIZIO in 2002 with $600,000 — six years later, his company
has grown to nearly $2 billion in sales. VIZIO was the top computer
and electronics company on the Inc. 500 in 2007 and No. 4 in the top
companies intending to go public.

Running a company that is growing at such an incredible rate is
quite a challenge. Like a rocket blasting into orbit, a company moving too fast can tear itself apart if the necessary precautions aren’t

Wang had managed MAG Innovision, another fast-growth company before founding VIZIO, and it didn’t end well. He learned a lot
from that experience, and he was determined to not make those
same mistakes again.

Here’s how Wang has successfully guided VIZIO’s transformation
from an unknown underdog to a respected brand that shook up
the TV industry.