We are at it again, scouring the internet pages to bring you the most up-to-date information on the world’s richest people. This time, we set our sights on China, the most populous country on earth. Being the second largest economy in the world, it has certainly produced its fair share of billionaires. Chinese women are part of the movers and shakers who have made a huge impact on the global economy and in the process, coin in big bucks. We compiled a list of the 20 richest women in China who epitomize success and affluence.
Aggregate Net Worth: $37.2 Billion
The self-made billionaire has come a long way from her poverty-stricken childhood. She is the founder and chairperson of Beijing’s largest commercial property developers Fu Wah International Group. She has proved to be an adept businesswoman and CEO. Fu Wah has swiftly conquered the real estate industry with its national network covering Hainan, Guangdong, among other major cities. Chan Laiwa is also famous for being a world class humanitarian.
Yang Huiyan is one woman that didn’t have to break a sweat to amass her fortune. In 2005, her father, Yang Guoqiang, transferred 70% of his shares in Country Garden to his daughter. Guoqiang established the real estate company in 1997 and although his daughter is the largest shareholder, he still sits as the chairman.
Zhang’s penchant for success began to surface in her early teenage years. She took up menial jobs in order to save money for her education abroad. Judging from her net worth, her efforts have clearly paid off. She is the co-founder and CEO of SOHO China, a real estate company that has taken China by storm. It stands as the country’s largest prime office developer.
Women in China are slowly moving out of their traditional role of a wife and mother to spearhead huge corporations that dominate the country
Another woman that is making piles of money from the real-estate industry is Wu Yajun. In 1995, Wu Yajun together with her ex-husband established Longfor Properties. They started with a capital investment of $1.6 million. It quickly became one of China’s key players in real estate and as of 2011, the company had a market capitalization of $8.62 billion.
The queen of fragrances and food flavorings comes in fifth with a net worth of $1.8 billion. Fortunes changed for Chu Lam in 1990 when she founded Huabao International Holdings. She worked under the radar until 2006 when she took the company public in Hongkong. Her company focuses on the production of food flavorings, tobacco flavorings and fragrances.
At the age of 25, Chen Ningning dipped her feet in the mineral industry and established Pioneer Metals Holdings Co., Ltd. The company went on to become one of the most successful mineral companies in Asia. Chen’s wealth has been plunging since 2011 thanks to lawsuits and unsettled debts in businesses she controls, but she still holds a staggering net worth of $1.8 billion.
The new generation of Chinese women are pretty tech savvy. iPhones, Ipad and mobile devices help close the gender gap in China
Chen Jinxia is the widow of entrepreneur and financial guru Wei dong. Following his demise, Chen inherited his shares in well-established companies including Yongjin Group, which has holdings in Zhuzhou Qianjin Pharmaceutical and Jiuzhitang. Chen’s razor-ship wit in finance has enabled her to manage all the assets impeccably.
After working for a decade for billionaire Terry Gou, Wang decided it was time to carve her own slice of the billionaire pie. She got the much needed career boost when she founded Luxshare Precision Industry, a company which manufactures electronics. We are glad Laichun decided to strike out on her own because we doubt she would have featured on the list if she hadn’t.
Chun Yuan Wu’s clout has been on an upswing ever since she co-founded AAC Acoustic Group in 1993 now known as AAC Technologies Holdings. The company manufactures acoustic products such as microphones, speakers, receivers, and headsets. Today, the self-made billionaire sits as a non-executive director of the company but still makes big bucks out of it.
Perenna remained in obscurity until March 2014 when Forbes crowned her with the title of the youngest billionaire. Kei is the majority shareholder of the real estate firm Logan Property Holdings and also serves as its non-executive director. She has her father to thank for all the fortunes and press coming her way. Her father, Ji Haipeng, is the CEO of the real estate firm, and he transferred 85% of the company shares to his daughter.
Zhou reminds us of this quote from Martin Luther King, Jr. “you don’t have to see the whole staircase just take the first step.” At the age of 17, Zhou had begun her business career by peddling embroidery hoops, needles and patterns. It was a tough job that she held onto for six years in a bid to sustain her poverty-stricken family. 30 years later, Zhou Xiaoguang is the proud owner of the world’s largest costume jewelry production base coined Neoglory Holdings Group.
He’s aspirations were clearly defined from the outset. She graduated with a degree in Forestry in 1988 and four years later, she established her own landscaping firm Beijing Orient Landscape. She faced a myriad of setbacks, but she took them all with stride. Today, He Qiaonv is revered as the leader of one of China’s largest landscape and interior companies.
Xiu Li recently grabbed headlines when her husband, Tony Hawken, filed for divorce because he was bored of the upscale lifestyle. He walked away with $1.6 million, which did little to dent Xiu’s bank account. Xiu Li is the largest shareholder of Renhe Commercial Holdings, one of the prominent developers of underground shopping centres in China. She has also invested in China Shouguang Agricultural.
Lei Jufang has ascended the billionaire ranks in true rags-to-riches fashion. Despite the hard financial times, Lei’s dreams of being successful in the field of medicine remained intact. She turned her dreams into reality when she founded Cheezheng Tibetan Medicine. The drug company provides painkillers in the form of ointments, plasters and powders. With the company’s profit margins mounting, we can only expect Ms lei’s net worth to shoot up.
Women in China are expected to contribute heavily to the future development of China
She comes at the bottom half of our list, but don’t be fooled; Weili Dai is venerated as one of the most successful and powerful entrepreneurs in the world. She has built herself a striking business resume through years. She hit a major milestone when she co-founded Marvell Technology Group. With Weili as the CEO, the company has been on a meteoric rise bringing in close to $3.17 billion in revenue. It’s also important to note that Weili is the only female co-founder of a global semiconductor company.
She may be filthy rich, but Huang Xi prefers to keep her private life and business endeavors under the wraps. But we managed to find out the source of her wealth. She is the CEO of Good First Group, a business conglomerate with interests in diverse fields such as property development, finance, and hi-tech. The company is also the founder and a major shareholder of Minsheng Bank.
No one can ignore the impact Zhang Yin has made on the paper industry. She is the founder & CEO of Nine Dragons Paper Holdings Limited: the world’s largest paperboard producer company in terms of productivity. Her company manufactures an array of containerboard products, which include white top linerboard, and kraftlinerboard.
Fan Xiulian is inching closer to the billionaire status that she once held. She is the vice chairperson and co-founder of Xizang Haisco Pharmaceutical. The stellar returns from the drugmaker have drawn investors, which has seen Haisco become one of the major companies in China’s pharmaceutical industry.
The emergence of powerful Chinese women in businesses have dispelled the preconceive notion of a typical Chinese housewife who only knows how to cook, raise kids and do tai-chi.
Suning Appliance has proved to be a gold mine for Chen Jinfeng, who is worth $890 Million. The company deals with various merchandise such as books, cosmetics, home appliances and the list goes on.
Liu Xiaomeng hit it big when she invested in retailer Suning Commerce, China’s largest retailer. They offer an array of products including beauty products and electronics. The company has been on an upward climb with its share price rising by more than one third, which translates to a fatter bank account for Liu.