Forbes: Top 15 China rich list members
( 2003-11-08 09:17) (China Daily)
$1 billion NetEase, Beijing 32
In mid-October Ding was a
billionaire. But shares in his 50%-owned NetEase, an Internet service provider,
recently dropped to $50 from $70 after third-quarter results did not meet
analysts' estimates. Still, NetEase is quite a rebound story: It traded as low
as 53 cents in the company's darkest hour after the Internet bubble. Two
executives resigned after delays in issuing financial reports, and trading of
its Nasdaq-listed shares was suspended for four months in 2001.
Larry Rong Zhijian & family
$934 million CITIC
Pacific Group, Hong Kong 61
It's been a mixed year for Rong, who led our
list last year and is a member of one of China's most celebrated business
families. Losses at Cathay Pacific hurt first-half profits because of a drop in
flights in and out of Hong Kong during the SARS (news - web sites) outbreak.
Property income fell, too. The company is looking to boost future earnings
through new investments in Shanghai property and China power projects.
$800 million Shimao Group, Shanghai and
Hong Kong 53
A former stockbroker, Xu has built up a fortune through
successful real estate projects in major Chinese cities such as Shanghai and
Beijing. His wealth grew this year through brisk sales of a project overlooking
the Bund. A five-star hotel is taking form along the famous Nanjing East Road
shopping district in Shanghai, and Xu is also expanding into Nanjing.
$687 million Wanxiang Group, Zhejiang 58
Having set up one of China's largest home-grown auto parts manufacturing
services, Lu is looking to financial services for growth and continues to expand
Wanxiang's business in the U.S., where it is already one of China's largest
foreign investors. As a member of the National People's Congress, he is active
in public affairs.
$550 million New Hope Group, Sichuan 52
Liu Yonghao, the most outgoing member of China's most celebrated
entrepreneur family, is having an uneven year. Shares in his feed company are
way down, and his bank investment hasn't offset that loss so far. Not slowing
down, Liu is actively involved in overseeing his businesses. One of his next new
areas of interest: malls. Four Liu brothers founded the New Hope Group in the
1970s and collectively turned themselves into billionaires for the first time
four years ago.
$490 million Shanda Networking,
Chan represents a new generation of Internet entrepreneurs. His
company is profiting from growing demand for online games, the leisure pursuit
of choice for a generation of young Chinese. Chan says he owns about 70% of
Shanda and counts Softbank as a significant shareholder. Based in Shanghai,
Shanda hopes to list its shares overseas soon.
$480 million East Hope Group, Shanghai
The quieter member of the Liu clan, he is working harder to squeeze more
margins out of the increasingly competitive feed business. The solution:
Maximize sales at each facility. East Hope is also in the process of building up
its presence in the aluminum business.
Ye Lipei & family
$421 million Super Ocean Group,
After an early career as a math teacher and trader, Ye
brilliantly invested in property in Shenzhen when the now-booming southern city
was more agricultural than urban. Today his investments are focused in Shanghai,
and he is profiting from the city's role as a booming commercial hub. A new
tower in the center of Shanghai's Lujiazui financial district will likely be
completed next year, as well as a mall that may be the test case for a national
$374 million Fosun Group, Shanghai 36
One of China's shrewdest investors, Guo has profited nicely this year from
one of his most canny diversifications in the past few years: the steel
business. This year he's turning his attention to the financial industry, with a
20% stake in a securities company. Among the best places to look for good
returns in China, he says, are inefficient industries where state-run companies
tend to dominate. If true, China's securities business is ripe for an overhaul.
Guo's business partner, Liang Xinjun, appears on the China Rich List for the
first time this year. Liang owns 22% of the group and is ranked 73. Guo holds
$361 million Fu Wah International Hong Kong
Chen's company holds choice commercial property in downtown Beijing
and is poised to profit from growth in Beijing property demand, especially in
connection with the 2008 Olympics. She also operates a sandalwood museum and a
factory that makes furniture reproductions.
$360 million Shide Group, Liaoning 32
customer of DuPont in China, Xu's Shide Group is a big maker of PVC window
frames and plastic doors. Xu has high hopes for the new government under
President Hu Jintao, expecting policies that will help his home area of
northeastern China catch up economically with the richer southern regions. Shide
owns a winning soccer club. Next on Xu's plate: locating partners for a
multibillion-dollar petrochemical complex that he hopes to build in the Dalian
$343 million Maosheng International Group,
Low-profile Liu has built a fortune by helping to meet China's
burgeoning need for road infrastructure. He also has interests in leisure and
$338 million BYD, Guangdong 37
shocked financial industry analysts and shareholders early in the year with the
announcement that BYD, one of the world's largest manufacturers of batteries,
planned to invest in an automaker in China. But critics have been silenced by a
big run-up in BYD's stock price. BYD's success has bred one other China Rich
List member: Lv Xiangyang appears at No. 52.
$337 million LinFeng Group, Beijing 37
Zhang's LinFeng Group made waves in the past year with the $50 million
purchase of a stake in a power plant owned by Enron in Sichuan province. The
move, which comes at a time when China is coping with energy shortages,
illustrates how the power business in the country is undergoing reform.
State-run giants used to dominate the business, but private firms are
increasingly being allowed in. Zhang is seeking to expand in the field.
Zhu Mengyi & family
$313 million Hopson Development,
One of China's biggest property developers, Hopson is well
regarded by industry insiders. From his base in Guangdong just across from Hong
Kong, his business has moved north in recent years. One of his targets: the
booming Shanghai market.