Baidu Founder & CEO Robin Li [Photo / Asianewsphoto]
The Chinese mainland almost doubled its number of billionaires from last year's 64 to 115 on Forbes' annual list of the world's richest people. The list was released Wednesday in New York.
Baidu Founder and CEO Robin Li grew his wealth to $9.4 billion, making him the 95th richest on the list. Li is the first Chinese mainland billionaire to reach the top 100, www.chinanews.com reported.
According to the list, Liang Wengen, co-founder of the heavy machinery manufacturer Sany Group, with a net worth of $8 billion, held the 114th position on the list. Zong Qinghou, chairman of the leading food and beverage company Wahaha Group, with his wealth of $5.9 billion, ranked 169. Chairman and CEO of Tencent Ma Huateng, whose wealth totaled $5 billion, held the 208th spot. NetEase CEO William Ding ranked 440 with his $2.6 billion. The last position of this top 1,000 list is held by the founder and president of New Oriental Education and Technology Group Inc Yu Minhong, who is also a newcomer on the list.
Hong Kong has 36 billionaires on the list. Hong Kong's richest man, Li Ka-shing, whose wealth surged by $5 billion to $26 billion, is 11th on the list. A total of 25 Taiwan billionaires are on the list, the report said.
This is the 25th Forbes ranking of the world's billionaires. These billionaires come from 54 countries and regions around the world. Of the 1,210 on the list, 214 are listed for the first time.
China's strong economy helped Asia become the factory of new billionaires, which has 332 people on the list. The number of Asian billionaires surpassed Europeans for the first time.
The top three are still Mexican telecom titan Carlos Slim Helu ($74 billion), Microsoft's Bill Gates ($56 billion) and investor Warren Buffett ($50 billion).