Close  

Bottled water billionaire pips Jack Ma to become China’s richest

/ 09:27 PM September 24, 2020
Nongfu Spring China

A woman walks past various brands of Chinese bottled water, including NongFu Spring, at a supermarket in Beijing on July 7, 2011.  AFP PHOTO/GOU YIGE (Photo by GOU YIGE / AFP)

A businessman who spun his wealth from bottled water and vaccines has usurped tech tycoon Jack Ma as China’s richest man, the Bloomberg Billionaires Index showed Thursday.

Nongfu Spring founder Zhong Shanshan’s net worth has hit $58.7 billion after a massive listing by the bottled water company in Hong Kong earlier this month.

ADVERTISEMENT

This makes him $2 billion richer than previous number one, Alibaba founder Jack Ma, the wealth index said.

Zhong’s Nongfu Spring, which claims to be number one in China’s massive bottled water market, is ubiquitous across a country where most people shun tap water for health reasons.

FEATURED STORIES

The company raised nearly $1.1 billion in its initial public offering.

Zhong is also the chairman of Beijing Wantai Biological Pharmacy Co. Ltd., a vaccine manufacturer that listed on the mainland in April.

It is developing a Covid-19 vaccine nasal spray in conjunction with a prominent university.

Zhong, a 66-year-old former reporter from Zhejiang who state media say was also once a construction worker, is often referred to by Chinese media as a “lone wolf” for his rare public appearances and reluctance to be interviewed.

He founded Nongfu in 1996, just as China’s bottled water market began to take off.

ADVERTISEMENT
Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: China, Jack Ma, NongFu Spring, world, Zhong Shanshan
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.


© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.