Rupert Hoogewerf: Young Chinese Billionaires Build Their Fortune, Not Inherit

Nearly 80 percent of the young and wealthy in China built up their careers from nearly nothing, the latest Hurun Report showed.

On Saturday in Shanghai, the Hurun Report released its first list of young and wealthy Chinese, which contained information about 56 people who are under the age of 40 and have at least 1 billion yuan ($154 million).

According to the 2010 Hurun Wealth Report, 1,900 billionaires now live in China.

Of the young billionaires, 44 started businesses from scratch, while only 12 inherited fortunes or estates.

Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of the Hurun Report, suggested that China’s young generation of rich people is better educated, more promising and more cosmopolitan.

Almost every person on the list had been to college and nearly 20 percent had earned a master’s or higher degree.

And since more and more businessmen are sending their children to study abroad, 50 percent of the rich people on the list had studied in the United States or Europe, making the generation far more cosmopolitan than its predecessors.

Four out of five Chinese entrepreneurs said they would consider sending their children abroad for a better education.

As for what the young billionaires studied, 60 percent went to business schools. The next most common degrees were in the sciences, in the arts and in engineering.

Ma Huateng, 39, co-founder of China’s largest Internet company Tencent, appeared at the top of the list, having a fortune worth 32 billion yuan. And Yao Ming, the famous basketball star, ranked in the 51st place.

Meanwhile, the jobs that produced the most billionaires were in information technology and entertainment; 15 people on the list worked in one or the other of those two industries; another 13 were real estate developers and 10 were in manufacturing.

The young generation appeared to be more attuned to fashion than its predecessors and more accustomed to having luxury goods.

Source: China Daily

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