BEIJING – The owner of real estate company Evergrande Group has become the richest person in China with $36.7 billion net worth, official news portal China.org.cn reported on Monday.
Xu Jiayin’s wealth puts him ahead of Alibaba co-founder Jack Ma, ($35.4 billion) and Tencent founder Pony Ma Huateng ($35.3 billion).
The Forbes “real-time ranking” of the world’s billionaires places Xu at number 20, one spot ahead of Jack Ma, and two ahead of Huateng.
The real estate titan, also known as Hui Ka Yan – his name in Cantonese – was named the richest person in China in 2017 by Forbes, with a fortune of about $42.5 billion.
Although his wealth declined in 2018, the increase in the value of Evergrande’s shares has repositioned him at the top of the China’s rich list as its stocks continued to rise over the past month, China.org.cn said, citing China Securities Journal.
In third and fourth place respectively are Tencent founder “Pony” Ma Huateng ($35.3 billion) and Wang Jianlin, president and founder of the Dalian Wanda Group with $22.6 billion.
The first woman to make the list is property developer and majority shareholder of Country Garden Holdings, Yang Huiyan, in sixth position with an estimated wealth of about $18.2 billion.
The youngest Chinese billionaire is Zhang Yiming, 34, and founder of ByteDance, a technological company that has developed popular apps such as Douyin (known in the international market as TikTok) with as estimated wealth of about $6.8 billion.