A nation’s fortunes are often prefaced not by the per capita income of the country but in the manner in which a few rich and powerful control its resources. Among the economically fastest growing countries in the world, China is leading from the front, and among those who dominate the Chinese economy are the wealthiest of people from Beijing.
A look at the previous years proves that these moguls have focused much of their wealth in Beijing. Substantiating this point is the fact that of the ten richest men in China, six are based in Beijing. The wealth of the 1,000 richest in China totaled to $923 billion, which is up by 21% as compared to last year and up by more than 50% if compared to the year before. This astronomical rise in the wealth of businessmen in China can also be gauged from the fact that the Hurun list which is the Forbes of China, clearly indicates that the list of Chinese businessmen in Beijing with assets worth more than 2 billion Yuan has increased to 133,220 more than the previous year.
The Hurun Rich List also indicated the ever increasing financial prowess of the wealthy of Beijing. To enter the ‘rich list’ one needed assets worth 1.8 billion Yuan till last year, which has since been raised to 2 billion Yuan. Moreover, Beijing’s concentration of the super rich at 153 out of the 1,000 richest in China is second only to Guangdong which is at 170. Not only has Beijing emerged as headquarters to many of the wealthiest businesses but most of their owners have shown a preference for taking up residence in the city.
Here’s a look at the top the ten wealthiest people in Beijing and their fortunes.
10 Pan Shi Yi and Zhang Xin: $3.2 Billion
The duo, Pan Shi Yi and Zhang Xin, dabbles in real estate and is perhaps the largest commercial property developers in China. Their eye is on the U.S. market since August when they bid for the General Motors building at New York. Soho China, their firm, has seen a 21% increase in wealth with their assets measuring $3.2 billion or around 23 billion Yuan making them rank 32nd richest in China and 10th in Beijing.
9 Huang Guangyu and Family: $3.25 Billion
With his overall position in the Hurun list of September 2013, he is the ninth richest person in Beijing with his wealth estimated at $3.25 billion or 20 billion Yuan. The 44 year old Huang Guangyu concentrates his wealth in real estate and household appliance retail. His company Pengrun Investment has its headquarters at Beijing which has seen a fall in its worth by -5%.
8 Huang Rulun: $3.6 Billion
A real estate giant and owner of Century Golden Resources, 62 year old Huang Rulun, has been featured as the 34th richest on the Hurun list with his assets estimated to be around 22 billion Yuan or $3.6 billion. His company is one of the largest real estate developers of China with 14 five Star hotels and six shopping malls. His stakes in the Bank of Beijing and New China Life Insurance give his stake at the top definite credibility.
7 Wu Yajun and Family: $4.6 Billion
The 22nd richest business entrepreneur in China, Wu Yajun’s presence on the Forbes list of the most powerful women in the world does not come as a surprise. She began her career as a journalist and then switched careers to enter into business. Her current worth as per the Hurun list is $4.6 billion or 22 billion Yuan, a fall of 26% in her net asset value. Her real estate enterprise Longfor Properties is now eyeing second tier cities such as Wuxi, Changzhou and Yantai, for expansion of their new projects.
6 Liang Wengen: $5.96 Billion
Liang Wengen owns 58% stakes in China’s largest heavy machinery manufacturing company Sany and also has stakes in a Hong Kong based coal mining business. Though he topped the Forbes list of richest in China in 2011, his fortunes seemed to have taken a drubbing and today he is listed as the 15th richest in China and 6th richest in Beijing. His wealth estimated at 36.5 billion Yuan or $5.96 billion, is much lower than its previous estimate in 2011. He has shifted base from Chansha to Beijing in order to revive his overseas business interests.
5 Lu Zhiqiang: $6.05 Billion
The Chairman of the Ocean Wide group of Beijing that has diverse assets in real estate, financial services and computers, is one if the fastest growing conglomerates of China. His net assets valued at 37 billion Yuan or $6.05 billion, which places him as the 12th richest in China and the 5th in Beijing. Lu Zhiqiang who pioneered the growth of the private sector in China is also the vice-chairman of the All China Federation of Industry and Commerce.
4 Chen Lihua: $6.05 Billion
Chen Lihua, has a similar net worth to Lu Zhiqiang with $6.05 billion or 37 billion Yuan, as per the latest estimates. The 70 year old who began the Fu Wah International Group that took up construction of residential complexes, has seen her wealth improve by 6% over the last estimates.
3 Yan Bin: $8.17 Billion
With his wealth estimated at 50 billion Yuan or $8.17 billion Yan Bin stakes claim for the third position in Beijing’s richest list. He owns the Chinese rights for Red Bull whose sales rose by 40% in an economy which is super charged with the first flush of extreme consumerism. Despite a marginal depreciation of his wealth by 2%, he has risen from his position as the 4th richest in Beijing to the third position as his assets in real estate and beverages increased dramatically.
2 Li Yanhong: $8.17 Billion
The youngest self made billionaire on the Hurun list, this 45 year old entrepreneur owns one of the giants in the IT industry Baidu, whose worth has been estimated to be 50 billion Yuan or $8.17 billion. A graduate from the State University of New York at Buffalo, Li Yanhong went on to work at the Silicon valley at Infoseek before setting up China’s very own search engine Baidu. Considered as the fastest rising stars among the Chinese billionaires, his fortunes have started dwindling ever since the market has switched its preference from PCs to mobile devices.
1 Wang Jian lin: $22.06 Billion
Wang Jian lin is the wealthiest Chinese whose worth is at a whopping 135 billion Yuan or $22.06 billion, an amount which is considered greater than Rupert Murdoch’s fortunes. He owns Wanda, the company which has over 71 shopping plazas, cinemas, television stations and hotels all across the globe. He became the largest cinema owner last year with over 6,000 screens across the U.S. and Asia.
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