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These are the people who built the Asia we know

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Beyond Shoes: Who Is Jimmy Choo?

Have you heard of Zhou Yang Jie? It’s Jimmy Choo’s Chinese name, and the name he has gone back to recently. While Jimmy is known for designing couture shoes, today he’s focused on giving back and fostering the next generation of designers. But why did Jimmy step away from shoes? You might think of his shoes as a luxury British or American brand, but Jimmy Choo is a Chinese-Malaysian son of a humble shoemaker. He grew his vision to one of the biggest names in global shoe culture, and it all started when he made his first pair of slippers at 11 years old. Jimmy studied in London, where he was spotted by a Vogue editor. An 8-page feature on the magazine put him on the map, and brought clients like Princess Diana. When editor Tamara Mellon convinced him to create a luxury ready-to-wear brand, Jimmy realized his opportunity for expansion. In 2017, he sold his business and namesake for £896M. Today, Jimmy spends his time creating fashion academies including one in his hometown.

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Why Does Virat Kohli Hold the Hearts of Millions?

During the T20 World Cup innings, Virat Kohli not only helped India win the match against Pakistan,he even cried on field–something fans haven’t seen before. What did this win mean for him–and India? Virat Kohli is one of Forbes highest paid athletes, the face of over 30 brands, and globally the third most popular sportsman today. With 221M followers, Kohli aka the “King of Cricket” is now the most popular Indian celebrity too. How did he start his career and become who he is today? At the age of 9, Virat’s father sent him to a cricket training academy, where he binged on biryani, pranked teammates, and partied. But years later, when he watched his father die of a stroke, Virat set a clear goal to play for his country at the highest level. Not only has he succeeded in doing so but today, Virat has carved a space in millions of hearts.

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The Come Up of HoYeon Jung

HoYeon Jung watched her follower count jump from 400,000 to 15 million in just three weeks. But before she was a globally recognised star, HoYeon had taken herself to audition for Korea’s Next Top Model at age 19, where she placed 2nd. . 6 months later she signed with a New York agency and became one of the most recognizable models South Korea has ever had. But as is the case with many models, the rise and fall was rapid, and soon HoYeon was getting less and less call backs. So, she began acting. It was in January of 2020 that Hwang Dong-hyuk, the 50-year-old South Korean writer-director who was casting for Squid Games, got a video from HoYeon, reading three scenes as Sae-byeok. The rest is history, the kind of history that gets you an #Emmys nomination for ‘Supporting Actress in a Drama Series’ for Squid Games. Watch how HoYeon went from an international model to one of the biggest breakthrough stars of 2021.

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BTS: The Seven Koreans that Lead the Biggest Army

7 The BTS A.R.M.Y. are a dedicated fanbase that gets shit done. Powerful enough to smash music industry records, pool money to plant 33,000 trees in Peru, and matched the band's $1 Million donation to Black Lives Matter. It’s a phenomenon that transcends different cultures on a global scale with “self love” at the core of what they believe in. If you want to support the troops, all you have to do is join the A.R.M.Y.

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LISA - The World Class Kpop Idol From Thailand

Fails an audition, consults a fortune-teller. The next time she performed, legend Danny Im said of her performance: “She seemed promising and was full of confidence. I will never forget the moment when she jumped off the stage, right in front of my eyes. I realized that only the ones with enough bravery and confidence can do that.” This Icons we celebrate Lisa, one fourth of Kpop’s biggest group Blackpink and the biggest Kpop idol from Thailand.

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The Richest Man in Asia: Jack Ma

Who is Jack Ma? He is known as one of the wealthiest tech giants of the world after founding multiple Chinese companies like Alibaba, Alipay, and Taobao. But what people don’t know, is that Jack was rejected from everything he applied to, including 10 rejections from Harvard. How did this man, who knows nothing about tech and started his career as a tour guide, go on to have the biggest public offering in history at $21B USD..? Watch to find out.