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May 30, 2017

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Terry Gou ranks as richest man in Taiwan, 182nd in world

Terry Gou (郭台銘), chairman of Hon Hai Precision Industry Co. (鴻海), is the richest person in Taiwan and the 182nd richest person in the world, according to the Forbes 2017 billionaire list.

In its latest billionaire report posted on its website on Monday, Forbes said the high-tech tycoon's net worth totaled US$7.5 billion as of March 20, 2017, surpassing the US$6.2 billion net worth of Want Want Group Chairman Tsai Eng-meng (蔡衍明) to become Taiwan's wealthiest person.

Gou's global ranking for 2017 rose from 228th in 2016, while Tsai's fell from 201st to 234th, Forbes data showed.

Forbes said Gou founded Hon Hai in 1974 with US$7,500 in his pocket and a belief that electronic products "would be an integral part of everyday life in every office and in every home."

Hon Hai, also known as Foxconn outside Taiwan, has now become the largest contract electronics maker in the world and assembles iPhones and iPads for Apple Inc.

Last year, Hon Hai became the first Taiwanese company to buy a major Japanese enterprise when it acquired a 66 percent stake in Japan's Sharp Corp. for US$3.5 billion.

Tsai's business empire covers a wide range of businesses, such as food, media, financial services and hotels.

Lin Yu-lin (林堉璘), the head of property developer Hong Tai Group (宏泰集團), ranked third in Taiwan and 281st in the world with a net worth of US$5.5 billion, followed by Samuel Yin (尹衍樑), who heads conglomerate Ruentex Group (潤泰集團) and has a net worth of US$4.2 billion to rank 414th globally.

Luo Jye (羅結), chairman of Cheng Shin Rubber Ind. Co. (正新輪胎), was the fifth wealthiest Taiwanese (460th globally, US$3.9 billion in net worth), followed by Barry Lam (林百里), chairman of the world's largest notebook computer contract maker, Quanta Computer Inc. (廣達) (474th globally, US$3.8 billion).

Fubon Financial Holding Co. (富邦金) Chairman Richard Tsai (蔡明興) was tied with his brother Daniel Tsai (蔡明忠), the company's vice chairman, as the 7th richest people in Taiwan (630th in the world) with a net worth of US$3.1 billion.

Scott Lin (林耀英), co-founder of smartphone camera lens supplier Largan Precision Co. (大立光), was tied with Tsai Hong-tu (蔡宏圖), chairman of Cathay Financial Holding Co. (國泰金), as the 9th richest people in Taiwan and 782nd in the world with a net worth of US$2.6 billion, according to Forbes.

In the 2017 rankings, Bill Gates, founder of Microsoft, retained the position as the richest person in the world with a net worth of US$86 billion. Gates has held the title for four years in a row, Forbes said.

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