MANILA, Philippines – All 11 Filipino tycoons who were featured in the 2015 edition of Forbes World’s Billionaires remained in this year’s exclusive billionaires’ circle, though most of them saw a decline in fortunes. (READ: 10 Filipinos on Forbes ’30 Under 30 Asia’ list)
Even the richest man in the Philippines, SM Investments Corporation chairman Henry Sy Sr, saw his net worth decrease this year – the new normal among world’s richest.
“Volatile stock markets, cratering oil prices, and a stronger dollar led to a dynamic reshuffling of wealth around the globe and a drop in 10-figure fortunes for the first time since 2009,” Forbes said.
Sy is the only Filipino to land in Forbes’ top 100 richest at 71st place, up from 2015’s 73rd.
Although he gained two spots, his net worth slid to $12.9 billion from $14.2 billion.
His SM group owns SM Prime Holdings, Incorporated, BDO Unibank, Incorporated, and SM Retail, Incorporated.
John Gokongwei Jr
Sy was followed by the chairman emeritus of JG Summit Holdings, Incorporated, John Gokongwei Jr, at a distant 270th place.
The 88-year-old tycoon’s ranking was down from 254th last year, after his wealth slid to $5 billion from $5.8 billion.
JG Summit’s operations include airlines, telecommunications, property development, banking, hotels, and power.
Although Lucio Tan of LT Group, Incorporated outranked two other Filipino billionaires who placed higher in the Forbes list last year, his ranking slipped to 380th from 369th.
Tan, who is also the chairman of Philippine Airlines, incorporated, saw his net worth dropping to $4 billion from $4.4 billion.
Tan also has interests in PMFTC, Incorporated; Asia Brewery, Incorporated; Tanduay Distillers, Incorporated; Philippine National Bank; and Eton Properties Philippines, Incorporated.
George Ty of GT Capital Holdings, Incorporated fell to 421st from 369th place in the Forbes list.
This is after the 83-year-old tycoon saw his net worth fall to $3.7 billion from $4.4 billion.
His family holding company, GT Capital, has operations in power, real estate, and banking.
Publicly-listed Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company, which Ty founded in his 20s, also contributed to Ty’s wealth.
Known as reserved, reclusive, and buttoned-up, Ty stepped down from Metrobank in 2006. His son, Arthur, became chairman.
The Tys also have investments in Toyota Motor Philippines and Philippine AXA Life Insurance.
David Consunji, Andrew Tan, Tony Tan Caktiong
Tied at 569th place are David Consunji of DMCI Holdings, Incorporated; Andrew Tan Jr of Alliance Global Group, Incorporated; and Tony Tan Caktiong of Jollibee Foods Corporation.
The current rank of the 94-year-old Consunji is a steep drop from 405th place last year. The construction czar started as a concrete inspector and since then, has already built over 500 buildings.
With a net worth of $3 billion, Consunji’s wealth rose alongside an increase in his DCMI Holdings’ stock. DMCI has interests in power generation, mining, water distribution, and real estate.
The wealth of Tan, 63, similarly went down to $3 billion from $4.8 billion in 2015. This caused him to slide from his 330th ranking in last year’s Forbes billionaires’ list.
Forbes described Tan as a property plutocrat with a majority stake in Megaworld, which builds townships in the country.
His Emperador Distillers went public in 2014 and bought scotch-maker Whyte & Mackay for $720 million.
Tan also has over 400 McDonald’s restaurants in the Philippines (owning franchise via his Alliance Global conglomerate) and Resorts World Manila.
Tan is the son of a factory worker who did odd jobs to finish college, and even joked that he would chase girls for rides home. He bought his first distillery from his savings.
Rising from 690th place last year is Tan Caktiong, 63, the lone Philippine businessman in the list who saw an increase in his net worth in 2016 – to $3 billion from $2.7 billion in 2015.
His food empire was called by Forbes as the fastest-growing Asian restaurant chain the world.
Last October, Jollibee acquired a 40% stake in American food chain Smashburger, and 100% ownership of food manufacturing Happy Bee Foods Processing Private Limited in China.
Tan Caktiong founded Jollibee in 1975 as two ice cream parlors. He controls some 2,700 locations of nearly a dozen different chains like Jollibee, Chowking, and Greenwich. He is the chairman while his brother Ernesto is CEO.
Enrique Razon Jr
Enrique Razon Jr of International Container Terminal Services, Incorporated fell several hundred places to 722nd from 2015’s 291st rank. His fortune dipped to $2.4 billion from $5.2 billion in 2015.
ICTSI has control over 29 ports across 21 countries, and is considered the largest port operator in the Philippines.
Although he inherited ICTSI from his father, Razon has been personally responsible for the firm’s expansion and internationalization since 1987, when he started as its executive vice president, Forbes wrote.
Razon is also known for Solaire resort and casino – dubbed as the first fully integrated resort casino in the Philippines that opened in March 2013. (READ: Razon bets on better PH gaming climate in 2016)
Lucio and Susan Co
Lucio and Susan Co of Puregold Price Club, Incorporated saw their fortune drop to $1.6 billion in 2016 from $2.3 billion. They are now ranked 1,121st from 810th in 2015.
The Cos started Puregold in 1998, which now has more than 200 stores, making it one of the Philippines’ largest supermarket chains.
New acquisitions are made through their holding company, Cosco. They also have interests in banking, energy, gaming, hotels, property, and wine and liquor.
Robert Coyiuto Jr
Roberto Coyiuto Jr of the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines (NGCP) and PGA Automobile, Incorporated saw his fortune decline to $1.6 billion from $1.8 billion, and his ranking to 1,121st from 1,054th.
He has a 30%-stake in the NGCP, a privately held consortium responsible for operating, maintaining, and developing the power grid for the entire country.
Coyiuto owns PGA Cars, a Filipino auto distributor of luxury brands like Audi, Lamborghini, Porsche, and most recently, Bentley. PGA opened its first motorcycle outlet in 2013.
Manuel Villar Jr
Former senator Manuel “Manny” Villar Jr of Vista Land & Lifescapes, Incorporated saw his net income slide to $1.3 billion this year from $1.6 billion in 2015, placing him 1,367th from 1,190th in 2015.
Villar has stakes in Starmalls and Vista Land & Lifescapes. His Wharton-educated son Paolo runs Vista.
His next venture: retail via All Day Supermart, and minimarts to be known as All Day Mart.
New norm: Declining fortunes
Behind these figures and rankings is a discouraging trend among the world’s top billionaires: declining fortunes due to volatilities in global financial markets.
Forbes’ 30th annual guide to the world’s richest showed that their aggregate net worth was $6.48 trillion, $570 billion less than last year.
“It was also the first time since 2010 that the average net worth of a billionaire dropped – it is now $3.6 billion, $300 million less than last year,” the magazine publisher said.
For the 17th straight year, Microsoft founder Bill Gates topped the Forbes list with a net worth of $75 billion, down from $79.2 billion. – Rappler.com
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