Formed in 1984 by a group of 11 people, in just two decades, Lenovo has emerged from nowhere to become the world's second biggest home computer maker. It's been a literally stratospheric rise -- the company's laptops are now first choice for astronauts on the International Space Station.
The Chinese computer whizz symbolically swallowed the personal computing division of iconic US brand IBM on its march to global domination in 2005, adopting its ThinkPad laptops brand. That's a far cry from the early days when Lenovo made circuit boards for IBM PCs to process Chinese characters.
Its original name Legend was ditched for Lenovo in 1988. "Le" derives from "legend" and "novo" from the Latin for "new". Soon after, it introduced its own home PCs and laptops to China in the early to mid-1990s. In 2011, a joint venture with NEC -- Lenovo NEC Holdings -- incorporated the Japanese firm's PC division to expand Lenovo's global reach.
Now operating out of the US, China and Singapore, the sky's the limit for Lenovo. In 2011 it launched a competition inviting people to propose an experiment that could be conducted in space.