Yang Yuanqing is putting his money where his mouth is when it comes to optimism about the future of Lenovo.

$404 million, to be exact.

The chief executive officer at the world’s No. 4 PC maker said Friday that he had purchased 797 million shares of Lenovo stock from its parent firm Legend Holdings.

Before the purchase, Yang owned some 70 million shares or 0.7 percent of the company’s total, Lenovo said in a statement.

“While the transaction is a personal financial matter, I want to be very clear that my decision to make this investment is based on my strong belief in the company’s very bright future,” Yang said.

“I also appreciate Chairman [Chuanzhi] Liu and Legend Holdings support of me to become an owner of our company. Our culture is built on commitment and ownership – we do what we say, and we own what we do.

“My decision to increase my holdings represents my steadfast belief in these principles. I am extremely confident that Lenovo has the people, the technologies, the vision and the momentum to be successful and achieve our aspirations in the years ahead.”

Legend Holdings remains the largest shareholder of Lenovo stock at 34.8 percent, the company said.

Yang served as Lenovo’s CEO from 2001-2005, was promoted to chairman, and returned to that role to replace former Dell exec William Amelio as part of a major shakeup in February 2009.

Since the changes, Lenovo’s business has surged, returning to profitability and rapid growth that could soon lift the company past No. 3 Acer on the top-selling list. HP and Dell rank 1-2 respectively.

Yang has also overseen the expansion of Lenovo into smartphones and the launch of tablet PCs to counter Apple’s iPad.

The company recently said it would acquire a major PC manufacturer in Germany and will form a joint venture with NEC in Japan. 

Lenovo operates its headquarters in Morrisville although most of its operations and business are done in China. The company purchased IBM’s PC division in 2005. Most of the IBM operations were located in the Triangle. 

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