12 Filipinos in Forbes’ 2015 billionaires’ list


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12 Filipinos in Forbes’ 2015 billionaires’ list
Henry Sy, the Philippines richest, climbs to 73rd from 2014’s 97th ranking

MANILA, Philippines – Nine of them were in the 2014 list, a retail power couple returns, plus a former senator join the ranks of Filipinos in the Forbes billionaires’ list for 2015.

From 97th in 2014’s ranking, mall magnate Henry Sy, 90, climbed to 73rd spot in the list of the world’s 1826 billionaires.

Sy still remains the richest man in the Philippines. His net worth of $14.2 billion is due to the continuous growth of his SM Investments Corporation, the largest retailer in the Philippines with over 200 individual outlets around the country.

Sy’s conglomerate started from a humble footwear shop, and now has interests in real estate development, shopping malls, and banking. His recent venture, City of Dreams Manila resort and casino, opened in December 2014. The resort cost $1.3 billion to develop and consists of 950 rooms, 365 tables, and 1,700 slot machines.

Sy’s daughter, Teresita Sy-Coson, ranked 33rd in Forbes annual “50 Power Businesswomen in Asia” list.

The other 11 Filipino billionaires in the Forbes list are (and their net worth in billions of US dollars):

 John Gokongwei Jr

From 388th in 2014 to this year’s 254th, Gokongwei, 87, has now a net worth $5.8 billion according to Forbes. The stock share of his conglomerate, JG Summit Holdings, skyrocketed on strong revenue growth. JG Summit’s operations include airlines, telecommunications, property development, banking, hotels, and power.

The “little turbulence” experienced by his budget carrier, Cebu Pacific, which was fined $1.2 million for excessive delays over Christmas in 2014, was only a dent to his conglomerate’s growth. His eldest child, Robina, runs Robinson Retail; brother James Go chairs JG Summit, while son Lance is president.

Enrique Razon Jr

Razon, 55, also upped his ranking from 2014’s 354th to 291st this year. He is the chairman and CEO of International Container Terminal Services (ICTSI), which 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 an 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. His net worth is now $5.2 billion.

Andrew Tan

From 319th in 2014, Tan, 62, slid down to 330th in this year’s Forbes billionaires’ list, with a net worth of $4.8 billion.

The magazine described Tan as a property plutocrat with a large 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 408 McDonald’s restaurants in the Philippines (owning franchise via his Alliance Global conglomerate) and Resorts World Manila.

Tan, a son of a factory worker, did odd jobs to finish college, even joked that he would chase girls for rides home. He bought his first distillery through his savings.

Lucio Tan

Tan, 80, fell from 227th to 369th spot this year, with a net worth of $4.4 billion.

Asia Brewery, Philip Morris-Fortune Tobacco, Philippine National Bank are among the company’s under Tan’s LT Group.

Tan also has a stake in Philippines Airlines, the country’s oldest airline, which he bought back in 2014 from San Miguel Corporation. He also owns real estate developer Eton Properties.

Tan started as a chemical engineer and mopped floors to pay for school. He enjoys flying helicopters, Forbes wrote.

George Ty

Ty, 82, climbed hundreds of spots to reach this year’s 369th spot from 2014’s 764th ranking.

Forbes wrote that Ty’s fortune, now with a net worth of $4.4 billion, has increased from a higher share price for his family holding company, GT Capital, which has operations in power, real estate, and banking. 

Publicly-listed Metropolitan Bank & Trust Company, which he founded in his 20s, also contributed to Ty’s wealth. Known as reserved, reclusive, and buttoned-up, Ty stepped down from Metrobank in 2006; son Arthur became chairman.

The Tys also have investments in Toyoto Motor Philippines and Philippine AXA Life Insurance.

David Consunji

Ranking 405th from 2014’s 483rd, Consunji, 93, is known as a construction czar, with an earlier gig as concrete inspector. But since then, has already built more than 500 buildings.

With a net worth of $4.1 billion, Consunji’s wealth rose alongside an increase in his DCMI Holdings’ stock. One particularly opulent offering, Taguig-based Acacia Estates, is being run by his son, Isidro. DMCI also recently ventured into the power industry.

In January 2015, DMCI won a $52 million contract to extend viaduct for Light Rail Transit line 2.

Tony Tan Caktiong

Like Ty, Tan Caktiong, 62, jumped hundreds of notches to land this year’s 690th spot, from 2014’s 1046th with a net worth of $2.7 billion.

His Jollibee Foods is looking to buy a US food company that’s at least $1 billion in market value. For now, he and Jollibee are mostly in the Philippines with a small presence in the US, Forbes wrote.

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. Currently the chairman, his brother Ernesto is CEO.

Lucio and Susan Co

After dropping from last year’s list, the Co couple returns this time with net worth of $2.3 billion at 810th spot, from 2013’s 736th.

The Cos started Puregold Price Club 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, while they also have interests in banking, energy, gaming, hotels, property, and wine and liquor.

Robert Coyiuto, Jr

Coyiuto, 62, ranks 1054th from 2014’s 1154th spot, now with a net worth of $1.8 billion. He now chairs the private insurance business, Prudential Guarantee & Assurance, which his father started, and to date has $7 billion in net premiums written.

He also has a 30% stake in the National Grid Corporation of the Philippines, 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

Villar, 65, a former presidential candidate and senator, has stakes in Starmalls and Vista Land & Lifescapes. His Wharton-educated son Paolo runs Vista. He joins this year’s list at 1190th with a net worth of $1.6 billion.

As a kid, Villar helped his mother sell seafood in a Manila market. His next venture: retail via All Day Supermart, and minimarts to be known as All Day Mart.

Growing list

Billionaire philanthropist Bill Gates kept his spot as the world’s richest man, a rank he has held for 16 of the past 21 years, Forbes magazine said on March 2.

The number of billionaires is growing steadily, breaking an all-time record this year, with 1,826 – up from 1,645 last year.

The rise of the dollar against the euro, along with plunging oil prices, significantly impacted this year’s list. – Rappler.com

US$1 = P44.04 

Photos of top 4 Filipino billionaires from Agence France-Presse, EPA, and Citibank.

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