Wang Jianlin is richest Chinese person in the world

By Ella Wong, August 20, 2015

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Property mogul Wang Jianlin (above, left) has ended fellow property mogul Li Ka-shing’s 15-year reign as the world’s richest person of Chinese origin, according to the latest Hurun Report.

Wang made his estimated RMB260 billion fortune through his Dalian Wanda Group, which owns Wanda Cinemas, the world’s largest chain of movie theaters, and Dalian Wanda Commercial Properties. 

Alibaba founder Jack Ma (above, right) – who, incidentally, is an alumni of Li Ka-shing’s Cheung Kong Graduate School of Business – came in third, with RMB165 billion in wealth.

The new Hurun ranking should come as no surprise; Bloomberg crowned Wang the wealthiest person in Asia – and 11th in the world – back in May, estimating his fortune at USD38.1 billion.

Li Ka-shing

While second-placed Li Ka-shing (above), who began his property empire in Hong Kong, is still filthy rich with some RMB200 billion to his name, the updated Hurun list is notable for reflecting the growing clout of Mainland billionaires.

"As little as 10 years ago, the most successful Chinese were all outside Mainland China. Today that has changed completely, with Wang Jianlin … representing the new era of Mainland China entrepreneurs," said Hurun publisher Rupert Hoogewerf.

Mainland Chinese make up 80 percent of the list of 1,577 US-dollar billionaires. Of the remaining 20 percent, 99 hail from Hong Kong and 77 from Taiwan, with the rest from around the Chinese diaspora, including Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia, the US and the Philippines.

“Despite being geographically disperse, almost half of the non-mainlanders had their ancestral homes in the coastal provinces of Guangdong and Fujian,” the South China Morning Post noted.

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