Thursday, October 11, 2007

Richest person in China is only 26-year-old

A 26-year-old worth $16.2 billion is mainland China's richest person and guess what the richest person is a married woman according to the business magazine Forbes, topping a list of tycoons whose wealth has soared amid a boom in stock and property prices.

The fortune of Yang Huiyan - also Asia's richest woman - is based on shares in Country Garden Holdings Ltd., a real estate developer founded by her father, Forbes said. It said the company's Hong Kong stock market debut this year made billionaires of Yang and four other people.

She is the second daughter of farmer-turned-developer Yang Guoqiang, who had for years planted rice, tended cows and mixed cement before founding Country Garden in 1997. Now the entrepreneur is managing a number of businesses such as property development and running hotels.

He followed Hong Kong tycoon Li Ka-shing in cultivating his children to follow in his business footsteps. He brought his daughter to the board meeting when she was a middle school student, and sent her to an American university to prepare her to take over his company.

He handed over 70 percent of Country Garden company's shares to his daughter's company, before the IPO. And when it was listed on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange. This newly-found wealth helped Yang surpass the "Queen of Wastepaper" Zhang Yin as the wealthiest person on the Chinese mainland.

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