Move over, Jack Ma. There’s a new richest man in China.
Forbes’ real time ranking of the world’s wealthiest people now has Tencent founder Ma Huateng, also known as Pony Ma, ahead of Alibaba CEO Jack Ma (no relation) by more than $1 billion ($37.4 billion to $36.2 billion) with the two internet and tech tycoons competing for the 18th place on the global list.
It’s already been quite the year for both billionaires. In the Forbes wealth list published in March, Jack Ma’s net worth was estimated at just $28.3 billion while Pony Ma’s was a mere $24.9 billion.
In recent years, the coveted title of China’s richest man has been handed back and forth between Jack Ma and real estate and entertainment mogul Wang Jianlin. However, Wang has recently fallen on hard times with rumors of political problems in the air, while China’s internet and tech giants continue to find unprecedented success in innovation while mostly staying on the government’s good side.
Earlier this year, Tencent became the world’s 10th biggest company (only to be surpassed soon after by Alibaba). Along with owning China’s most popular social media platform, WeChat, and a payment system that is changing the way that the country operates, Tencent is also the world’s biggest online gaming company. Meanwhile, it has also followed in Alibaba’s footsteps by investing in new technologies, trying to be at the forefront of future trends.
While Jack Ma is noted for a being a charismatic figure who gives speeches abroad and meets with American presidents, Pony Ma has always kept a low profile, only making headlines each year when he hands out hongbao to employees.
Meanwhile, it’s worth noting that the Bloomberg Billionaires Index still has Jack Ma way ahead of the competition with a net worth of $44.1 billion, compared to Pony Ma’s measly $33.7 billion and Wang Jianlin’s $30.2 billion.
Anyway, we can’t wait to see how Pony Ma celebrates this achievement at the next company event.
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