China’s young billionaires amassed a combined fortune of more than $223 billion this year as the country enjoyed its fastest year of wealth accumulation, even as the world battles its worst economic crisis in decades.
China had 60 billionaires below the age of 40 this year, according to the latest Hurun Rich List released last week. Of them, 14 joined the billionaire club for the first time in 2020, as a tech-fuelled stock market surged and a spate of IPOs paved the way for wealth growth amid the coronavirus downturn.
The uptick mirrors a wider unprecedented surge in the fortunes of China’s uber-wealthy, with the country now home to 878 billionaires with a combined wealth of $4 trillion. A decade ago in 2010, the country counted just 189 billionaires.
“The world has never seen this much wealth created in just one year. China’s entrepreneurs have done much better than expected. Despite Covid-19, they have risen to record levels,” said Rupert Hoogewerf, Hurun Report chairman and chief researcher.
Now in its 22nd year, the annual Hurun ranking seeks to provide a “snapshot of wealth” in the world’s second-largest economy as of Aug. 28. Focusing on both wealthy individuals who were born and brought up in mainland China, as well as individuals born outside of mainland China but who reside there today, the report draws on data and interviews in what it labels “as much an art as it is a science.”