“We are entering the PC market because I know consumers want a high-quality and beautifully designed personal computer that is affordable. We asked the question, ‘Why can’t we deliver smart industrial design and performance without a price premium?’”
Vizio started off really small–just two employees and me. We started the company with $600,000. I borrowed some money from my parents, mortgaged my house, and had a couple of friends who helped me. Basically, friends and family. Later we got venture financing. And a couple of manufacturers have ownership. I’m still the majority holder of the company.
We’re here to make innovative technology a commodity.Anything that’s popular will become a commodity. We’re not here to build a cheap product; we’re here to make the product affordable.
It’s hard to build a big company. You have to be a lot better than the competition. We also have to be careful how we spend our money. There’s a difference between being lean and being cheap. Being cheap is when you don’t want to spend any money and just keep it yourself. Lean is keeping costs really low–our overhead is just 0.7 percent of sales. At the really big consumer electronics companies, overhead is usually 10 percent of sales, or more.
The company is not me, it’s many people’s efforts. And it’s not just all about work–it’s being able to appreciate one another.