Shadows of Europe
Corporate Court Ranking: #6 (Previously 9#)
Corporate Slogan: “We’re behind everything you do.”
Corporate Status: Public corporation
World Headquarters: Hong Kong Free Enterprise Enclave
President/CEO: Sharon Chang-Wu
Major Shareholders: Wu Lung-Wei, Sharon Chiang-Wu, Fu Peng, James Harper-Smythe, Lu Bao Ling
Prime Facilities: Hong Kong, Fuzhou, Boston, London, Addis Ababa
The only Chinese player on the megacorp scene, Wuxing owns a sizeable chunk of the Pacific rim. The corporation is quiet and conservative, the stealthiest of the Big Ten. Their employees are steeped in Chinese culture, even those who’ve never been within a thousand clicks of Asia. Traditionally focused on finance and shipping concerns, Wuxing also specializes in mag- ical services and goods, vying for the top spot of most mystic megacorp. Wuxing has also expanded heavily into other markets, including agriculture, engineering, consumer goods, and chemicals.
|Major Divisions & Subsidiaries:|
Red Wheel Engineering
Jam Bo Games
Tiger Trideo and Simsense
Cartwright Cartage and Freight
Swift Wind Deliveries
Wuxing Worldwide Shipping
Awakened Protection Initiatives
Albion Mutual Funds
Fidelity Mutual Insurance
Malaysian Independent Bank
Morgan and Chase Corporation
Prosperity Development Corporation
Warren Wealth Management
Wuxing Financial Services
|Medical Supplies and Services:
Bach Mai Medical
Medical Supplies Ltd.
Although now a world-spanning megacorporation with offices in numerous countries, the “soul” of Wuxing was forged in the city of its birth —Hong Kong. The Hong Kong Free Enterprise Enclave as we know it to- day began in 2015 when the weakened government of China finally succumbed to the combined pressure of local corporations and foreign diplomats and granted the city its independence. What many do not know, or may have forgotten, is that these efforts were in no small part driven by one Wu Kuan-Lei, head of a rapidly growing shipping and finance conglomerate known as Wuxing. Although a corporate powerhouse, it was an alliance with another notable but British family, the Harper-Smythes, that allowed it to exert powerful political influence. Together these seemingly disparate families and cultures laid the foundations for a corporate empire.
After their significant victory in gaining independence, the corporate heavy hitters in the city wasted no time in building monuments to their own glory. Thus, after heavy consultation with the best geomancers available, Wu constructed what has become widely recognized as the worldwide headquarters of Wuxing: the Aberdeen Skytower. At the time, many thought the location unusual due to its remoteness from the city center, but future events would show just how significant and insightful that location selection had been. Wuxing continued its meteoric expansion right through to the crash of ’29. Thanks to the solid footing wily old Wu had put it in, the company was able to weather the storm and come out in a comparatively good position on the other side. However, that was to be the last milestone of the elder Wu’s life. He died peacefully in 2039 at the age of 71. The corporation continues to venerate his ancestor spirit to this day, and it is easy to see why.
After a time of appropriate mourning, the big CEO chair passed to his son Wu Lung-Wei, who vowed to continue his father’s last great vision. So he began the work of building a united corporate alliance against the growing hostile influence of the major Japanese corporations. In addition, he continued such solid business practices as diversification and sensible expansion, building the company into a solid AA multinational corporation within six years.
After their initial stupendous growth, things seemed to slow down for the lotus corp. The Japanese competitors finally started to take this Chinese upstart seriously and put up serious impediments to their growth. For a time, Wuxing dropped quietly out of the headlines. Until, of course, they were thrown back into the spotlight with a bang. Literally.
When a certain dragon was elected president and then subsequently blown to bits in 2057, his will threw Wuxing right back to the top of the headlines. To every- one’s massive surprise, Wuxing and its top people were named not just once or twice, but three significant times in the late dragon’s will. The first, and probably least significant (and this is saying something) was no less than 200 million nuyen, given “per our previous agreement.” Though no one has ever disclosed exactly what that agreement was, the money ended up in Wuxing’s magical research division.
The second item that turned heads was the Third Coin of Luck, which legend generally associates with Fertility. This was gifted to Wu’s wife, Sharon Chang-Wu. Remember that item for later.
Finally, the big man himself, Wu Lung-Wei, was granted the artifact known as the Jade Dragon of Wind and Fire. Any one of these bequests would have been memorable, but all three almost caused the drekstorm of the century. The only thing that saved Wuxing from facing more heat was the fact that so much was going on with the dragon’s will nobody could keep track of it all. What happened in the next few years, though, was a series of events that no one could ignore.
Wuxing’s business growth in the last few decades had been solid, impressive even, but their growth after 2057 was nothing short of spectacular. Every move they made turned out to be perfect. They moved stock at its peak price, they acquired businesses for a bargain right before they made a major breakthrough, they released a brand-new product just in time for it to take off as a cultural phenomenon, and every risky research project turned out a major breakthrough. Within a year they had gained a seat on the Corporate Court and become a fullfledged AAA.
Their astounding success drew the attention of many potential allies to their side. Wuxing used its considerable financial resources and newfound business acumen to put many small corporations around the Pacific Rim back to a position that they hadn’t been in since prior to the first Crash. Steadily, they were building that anti-Japanese corporate alliance that the Wu family had long dreamed of. The knockout blow came when Yamatetsu shockingly moved their headquarters to Vladivsotok and joined Wuxing’s little club. In 2059 the papers were signed, and the Pacific Prosperity Group was officially formed.
Things peaked for the lotus corp in 2061. It was quite the year, for those of you that remember, with the return of Haley’s Comet causing all sorts of chaos all over the world. For the Wu family, it was a banner year at home. Sharon Chang-Wu gave birth to quintuplet girls. Remember that coin she was given? The one that legends associate with fertility? The legends continue. Since the moment of their birth, the quints have been quite a cultural force; I’ll have more on them later. The magical energies suffusing the Wuxing Skytower also seemed to hit their peak in ’61, with the whole building becoming an astral shallow, with astral space becoming visible to the mundane in the immediate area. But, just like so many other weird and wonderful things that happened in ’61, the magic ebbed, and so did Wuxing’s “Midas touch,” so to speak. While they continued to have solid success and solid growth, their out-of-this-world luck had finally left them.
The next major shakeup came when Crash 2.0 hit. While the big corps had enough cash in the bank to take the hit, most of the smaller ones didn’t. Never one to waste an opportunity, Wuxing swooped in to take over many of their erstwhile allies, the most significant being the Malaysian Independent Bank. This acquisition ruffled more than a few feathers with their megacorp ally Evo (once Yamatetsu). Tension continued to build in the PPG, and Wuxing must really have been feeling it when they rammed through the approval of Aztechnology bid to join. To say this was controversial would be an under- statement.
At this point the cracks really started to show in Wuxing’s once-spotless businesses empire. Relations with its former allies were becoming more strained by the day, and competition from the Japanese corporations (and around the globe for that matter) wasn’t exactly letting up. Maersk started to seriously challenge the corp in their traditional business stronghold of shipping, a corporate battleground that exists to this day. When knowledge of the CFD virus finally got to the public, and “blame” landed on Evo, it was the last straw in their increasingly fragile friendship. For the sake of good PR, Wuxing cut pretty much all business ties with Evo and publicly condemned their actions.
The PPG now mostly exists just on paper, without much in the way of serious cooperation or assistance between the corporations. Aztechnology —never a good fit for the group from the beginning— hasn’t contributed much for Wuxing except for handing them a few new shipping contracts.
The last big milestone for Wuxing was something that I’m sure everyone (at least, those who watch the corporate news) saw on the trid: the stepping down of Wu Lung-Wei as CEO for “health reasons” and being re- placed by none other than his wife Sharon Chang-Wu. This may have been surprising for those not watching the corp, but for those with an ear to the inside it was a formalization of what was an internal reality for quite some time. Relations at the top of Wuxing have not been dull for quite some time.