‘Missing’ Jack Ma slips to fourth spot in China’s rich list

Rajesh Kurup Mumbai | Updated on January 12, 2021

Jack Ma

Tech entrepreneur’s net worth fell 6% from $58.8 b in October, according to Hurun data

When the world is debating Jack Ma’s disappearance, back in China, the billionaire’s net worth fell to $55.5 billion, pushing him down to the fourth position in the country’s rich list. This is the first time in five years, the Alibaba Group co-founder is not featured among the top three tycoons in China.

As on January 8, Ma Yun’s (Jack Ma's Chinese name) net worth fell 6 per cent from $58.8 billion recorded in October 2020, according to data collated by Hurun Research.

Ma, the tech entrepreneur, has not made any public appearance in the recent months after he criticised Chinese regulators. This had sparked speculations across the world of him ‘lying low’, ‘embracing supervision’ or is either ‘arrested’ or ‘under house arrest’.

Richest in Asia

Meanwhile, Zhong Shanshan, Chairman of the Chinese bottled-water company Nongfu Spring, with a net worth of $93.8 billion dethroned Mukesh Ambani to emerge as the richest Asian, closing in on the $100-billion club. As on January 8, Zhong’s net worth rose 75 per cent from $53.7 billion in September 2020, while that of Reliance Industries’ Chairman and Managing Director declined by 17 per cent.

Ambani displaced

Hammered by a fall in share prices, Ambani’s wealth fell to $83 billion (January 8) from $88 billion posted in September last year, pushing him down to ninth position from world’s eighth richest in December.

Ambani, who was ranked the ninth richest man in the global rich list for two consecutive years, 2019 and 2018, had moved up to fourth place in August 2020.

Musk’s wealth

Tesla CEO and founder Elon Musk, with a net worth of $191 billion emerged as the wealthiest person on the planet, unseating Amazon founder Jeff Bezos. Musk’s wealth more than doubled (2.5 times) from $75 billion recorded on September 30, 2020, while that of Bezos fell to $181 billion from $200 billion during the same period.

Policy change

“The incoming Joe Biden (US President-elect) administration’s commitment towards climate change by moving away from fracking has pushed up the share price of renewable energy companies In the US, one of the obvious beneficiaries being Tesla,” Hurun India Managing Director and Chief Researcher Anas Rahman Junaid told BusinessLine.

Musk’s rise to the top slot was led mainly by a rise in stock prices of Tesla, in which he holds about 20 per cent stake, and his 11 per cent stake in Amazon.

In China, Huang Zheng (founder and CEO of e-commerce company Pinduoduo) came in second with a wealth of $64 billion, up 98 per cent from $32.4 billion posted in October 2020, followed by Ma Huateng (founder and CEO of Internet giant Tencent Holdings) with a wealth of $59.5 billion came in third.

Published on January 08, 2021

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