Philippine tycoons

Manny Villar is top Filipino billionaire, 232nd richest in Forbes global list

Lance Spencer Yu

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Manny Villar is top Filipino billionaire, 232nd richest in Forbes global list

TYCOON. Billionaire Manny Villar.

Manny Villar's Facebook page

Nearly half of all billionaires worldwide 'are poorer than they were a year ago,' says Forbes in its 2023 report

MANILA, Philippines – Property magnate and former Senate president Manuel “Manny” Villar Jr. ranked as the 232nd richest person in the world, and the top among the 14 Filipinos who made it to the Forbes World’s Billionaires List for 2023.

Villar’s net worth stands at $8.6 billion, up from $8.3 billion in 2022. Forbes identified his stake in Golden MV Holdings, a developer of memorial parks and residential projects, as his biggest asset. He also sits as the chair of property developer Vista Land & Lifescapes. Last year, Villar applied for the initial public offering of VistaREIT.

Villar’s family remains heavily involved in politics, with his wife Cynthia and son Mark currently serving as senators, and his daughter Camille sitting in Congress as representative of Las Piñas City.

Ports tycoon Enrique Razon Jr. is the next richest Filipino on the list, and the 312th richest in the world, with a net worth of $7.3 billion. Razon chairs the global port operator International Container Terminal Services Incorporated or ICTSI. He also chairs Bloomberry Resorts Corporation, the developer of Solaire Resort & Casino and the Jeju Sun Hotel & Casino in South Korea.

Ramon Ang, president and chairman of San Miguel Corporation, ranked as the third richest Filipino and the 852nd richest in the world, with his net worth jumping from $2 billion in 2022 to $3.4 billion in 2023. His conglomerate, one of the oldest in the country, has interests in food and beverage, energy, and petroleum, among others. (READ: It was a San Miguel Shipping subsidiary that chartered MT Princess Empress)

The heirs of the late Henry Sy Sr., who were included in the Forbes list, have a collective net worth of $13.6 billion. Sy had ranked as the richest person in the Philippines for 11 straight years until his death in January 2019. His sons and daughters hold various positions across the SM Investments conglomerate.

Also on the list are Andrew Tan, who heads the conglomerate handling Megaworld, Emperador Distillers, and the McDonald’s franchise in the Philippines; Lucio Tan, who heads the LT Group, Philippine Airlines, and Philippine National Bank; and Lance Gokongwei, the only son of the late John Gokongwei Jr., who founded JG Summit.

Tony Tan Caktiong – who heads Jollibee Foods – and Inigo Zobel – who sits on the board of San Miguel Corporation and is related to the Ayala family – round out the list.

Meanwhile, the fortunes of Henry Sy Jr., Andrew Tan, Hans Sy, Herbert Sy, Harley Sy, Teresita Sy-Coson, Elizabeth Sy, Lance Gokongwei, and Tony Tan Caktiong all shrank in 2023, reflecting a worldwide trend observed by Forbes.

“Nearly half of all billionaires are poorer than they were a year ago,” Forbes said in its report. “Falling stocks, wounded unicorns, and rising interest rates translated into a down year for the world’s wealthiest people.”

Here is the list of all Filipino billionaires included in the 2023 Forbes list, alongside their respective world rankings:

World rankNameNet worthSource
232Manuel Villar$8.6 billionReal estate
312Enrique Razon Jr.$7.3 billionPorts
852Ramon Ang$3.4 billionDiversified
1217Henry Sy Jr.$2.5 billionDiversified
1217Andrew Tan$2.5 billionDiversified
1272Hans Sy$2.4 billionDiversified
1272Herbert Sy$2.4 billionDiversified
1272Lucio Tan$2.4 billionDiversified
1368Harley Sy$2.2 billionDiversified
1368Teresita Sy-Coson$2.2 billionDiversified
1575Elizabeth Sy$1.9 billionDiversified
2020Lance Gokongwei$1.4 billionDiversified
2259Tony Tan Caktiong$1.2 billionFood
2540Inigo Zobel$1 billionDiversified

The world’s richest person is currently Bernard Arnault, head of luxury goods conglomerate LVMH, with a net worth of $211 billion. Elon Musk slipped to second place, following his acquisition of Twitter, which sent Tesla share prices tumbling.

Forbes calculated net worth using stock prices and exchange rates as of March 10. –

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Lance Spencer Yu

Lance Spencer Yu is a multimedia reporter who covers the transportation, tourism, infrastructure, finance, agriculture, and corporate sectors, as well as macroeconomic issues.