TL;DR – There’s rich. And there’s rich.
Here they are:
1. Robert and Philip Ng. Combined net worth: USD10.9 billion
Sons of the late Ng Teng Fong, they control Far East Organization, Singapore’s largest private landlord and property developer. Robert overseas Hong Kong arm, Sino Group, while Philip oversees the Singapore interests.
2. Goh Cheng Liang. Net worth: USD8.1 billion
Goh Cheng Liang gets the bulk of his wealth from a 39% stake in Japan’s Nippon Paint Holdings, the fourth largest paint manufacturer in the world. Goh started making paints in a small factory in Singapore before he went on to partner Japan’s Nippon Paint in 1962.
3. Wee Cho Yaw. Net worth: USD7 billion
Wee Cho Yaw is chairman emeritus of United Overseas Bank, Singapore’s third-largest lender. UOB was cofounded by his father Wee Khiang Cheng in 1935 as United Chinese Bank.
4. Kwee Family. Combined net worth: USD5.7 billion
The four Kwee siblings control privately held Pontiac Land.Pontiac Land was founded by their Indonesian father Henry Kwee. Pontiac Land owns an array of luxury hotels and iconic office towers. They are building an 82-story tower beside the Museum of Modern Art, where apartments cost from $3 million to over $70 million. They have also agreed to buy the Cappella Hotel group. They are building a resort complex in the Maldives.
5. Jason Chang. Net worth: USD3.3 billion
Jason Chang chairs Taiwan’s Advanced Semiconductor Engineering, the world’s largest provider of independent semiconductor assembling and test manufacturing services. Along with his brother Richard, Jason is also one of the main investors in commercial real estate developer Sino Horizon Holding.
6. Kwek Leng Beng. Net worth: USD3 billion
Kwek Leng Beng is the executive chairman of Singapore’s Hong Leong Group, founded by his father in 1941. He is also executive chairman of City Developments, the island state’s second-largest property developer. He has been on an overseas expansion drive in recent years, acquiring assets in the UK, China and Australia.
7. Zhao Tao. Net worth: USD2.8 billion
Zhao Tao is the chairman of Shandong Buchang Pharmaceuticals, a supplier of traditional Chinese medicine to fight cardiovascular disease. He is now a Singaporean citizen.
8. Raj Kumar and Kishin RK. Net worth: USD2.7 billion
Father-son pair, Raj Kumar and Kishin RK, are among Singapore’s leading landlords with their Royal Holdings/RB Capital property empire.
9. Kuok Khoon Hong. Net worth: USD2.3 billion
Kuok Khoon Hong cofounded Wilmar in 1991 and built it into one of the world’s largest palm oil producers. His other investments include stakes in billionaire Zhong Sheng Jian’s Yanlord Land as well as Perennial Real Estate Holdings. He co-owns the Aviva Tower in London with Indonesian billionaire and Wilmar cofounder Martua Sitorus.
10. Peter Lim. Net worth: USD2.2 billion
After cashing out of palm oil giant Wilmar eight years ago, former stockbroker Peter Lim has focused on property, healthcare and sports. His Singapore-listed Rowsley is building a $1.2 billion health care city in Malaysia’s Iskandar region.
11. Choo Chong Ngen. Net worth: USD2.2 billion
Choo Chong Ngen made his fortune in textiles before launching his Hotel 81 budget chain in Geylang, Singapore’s red-light district.
12. Sam Goi. Net worth: USD2.1 billion
Sam Goi owns Tee Yih Jia Food Manufacturing, the world’s largest maker of popiah skins, that are used for spring rolls. He also has real estate interests through his stakes in listed firms GSH and KOP.
13. Ong Beng Seng and Christina Ong. Net worth: USD2 billion
Ong Beng Seng and his wife are one of Singapore’s most influential couples. Ong Beng Seng is managing director of Singapore-listed Hotel Properties, which owns the Four Seasons and Hilton hotels in Singapore and many other hotels. Christina runs Como Hotels & Resorts, retail empire Club 21 and London-listed handbag maker Mulberry.
14. Zhong Sheng Jian. Net worth: USD1.98 billion
Zhong Sheng Jian chairs Yanlord Land, one of the largest non-government-owned real estate developers in China. Initially from China, he moved to Singapore in 1988.
15. Chang Yun Chung. Net worth: USD1.94 billion
Chang Yun Chung cofounded Pacific International Lines in 1967 as a coastal operator with two second-hand ships. The company has an MOU with China Merchant Port to develop new markets in Southeast Asia, South Asia and Africa.
16. Lim Oon Kuin. Net worth: USD1.7 billion
Lim Oon Kuim founded Hin Leong Trading in 1963 at age 20 with a single truck delivering diesel to fishermen and small rural power producers. Today Hin Leong is one of Singapore’s largest independent oil traders.
17. Asok Kumar Hiranandani. Net worth: USD1.56 billion
Asok Kumar Hiranandani is the co-founder of erstwhile Royal Brothers property group. He separated from his older brother Raj Kumar in 2011 after dividing their property empire. His Royal Group, run by son Bobby, owns such trophies as the 215-room Sofitel Singapore Sentosa Resort and the So Softel Hotel in Singapore.
18. Chua Thian Poh. Net worth: USD1.47 billion
Chua Thian Poh got start making hooks and spikes for the logging industry. He went on to found luxury property developer Ho Bee Land, known for building high-end condos in Sentosa. The company has a diversified portfolio that includes commercial property overseas, notably in London.
19. Oei Hong Leong. Net worth: USD1.42 billion
Oei Hong Leong is this son of Indonesian billionaire Eka Tjipta Widjaja. The bulk of his wealth is derived from a corporate bond portfolio and real estate assets. In September 2017 he announced a $5 billion investment in One Belt One Net, his new company, that will build data centres in Singapore.
20. Tan Min-Liang. Net worth: USD1.32 billion
Tan Min-Liang is a new entrant to the billionaires list. He gave up a law career in Singapore to start gaming devices company Razer in 2005. The company has acquired a huge global following and sold millions of gaming laptops, mice, fitness bands and tablets. Razer’s backers include IDG-Accel, Temasek Holdings, Intel and Li Ka-shing’s Horizon Ventures. Following the launch of Razer’s first smartphone, Tan Min-Liang listed the firm in Hong Kong in November 2017, raising $529 million.
21. Ron Sim. Net worth: USD1.21 billion
Ron Sim is the founder of OSIM International, maker of high-end massage chairs. He created V3 Group, which houses OSIM and TWG Tea, among much else, and is awaiting its Hong Kong listing. He also owns a sizeable property portfolio that includes a stake in listed Perennial Real Estate Holdings.
22. Koh Wee Meng. Net worth: USD1.11 billion
Hotelier and property magnate Koh Wee Meng controls Singapore-listed Fragrance Group with interests extending to Australia and the UK. His latest acquisition is a majority stake in education provider TMC Education.
Who’ll be next?
Asia is getting richer. And as it does, the number of billionaires in Singapore will invariably increase. And it’s likely that we will see more billionaires in Singapore too. Tan Min-Liang is this year’s new entrant. Who will be added to the list of Singaporean’s billionaires next year? Will you start something today that will put you on the list in the future?