The Wei (魏) brothers of Ting Hsin International Group (頂新集團), a large food and beverage conglomerate in Taiwan, replaced Terry Gou (郭台銘), founder of Taiwanese manufacturing giant Hon Hai Precision Industry Co (鴻海精密), as the richest people in the nation, Forbes magazine said.
In the latest Forbes Taiwan Rich List released on Wednesday, the magazine said the Wei brothers — Wei Ing-chou (魏應州), Wei Ying-chiao (魏應交), Wei Yin-chun (魏應充) and Wei Ying-heng (魏應行) — took the top spot on the list, moving up one notch from the report released in November 2018, with a combined net worth US$7.2 billion, little changed from the last report.
However, Gou, who in June stepped down as chairman of the iPhone assembler, dropped from first to fourth place, as his net worth fell from US$7.3 billion to US$6.9 billion.
Brothers Tsai Hong-tu (蔡宏圖) and Tsai Cheng-ta (蔡政達) of Cathay Financial Holding Co (國泰金控), one of the nation’s largest financial groups, took the second spot, with a combined net worth of US$7.1 billion, ahead of Tsai Eng-meng (蔡衍明) of Want Want China Holdings Ltd (中國旺旺控股), another food conglomerate, who had a net worth of US$7 billion.
Tsai Eng-meng was the biggest individual gainer in US dollar terms, as his net worth rose by US$1.4 billion, boosting his position on the list by two notches, Forbes said.
Want Want benefited from a fall in raw material prices, allowing its bottom line to improve in the first half of last year amid a global trade dispute, the magazine said.
Daniel Tsai (蔡明忠) and Richard Tsai (蔡明興) of Fubon Group (富邦集團), another large financial institution, came in fourth, with a combined net worth of US$5.7 billion, ahead of Jason Chang (張虔生) and Richard Chang (張洪本) of ASE Group (日月光集團), the largest integrated circuit packaging and testing services provider in the world, with an accumulated net worth of US$4.6 billion.
Barry Lam (林百里), chairman of contract notebook computer maker Quanta Computer Inc (廣達電腦), took the seventh spot, with a net worth of US$4.3 percent.
He was followed by Pierre Chen (陳泰銘), founder and CEO of electronics components maker Yageo Corp (國巨, US$3.8 billion); Lin Shu-hong (林書鴻), head of petrochemical conglomerate Chang Chun Group (長春集團, US$3.75 billion); and Scott Lin (林耀英), founder of Largan Precision Co (大立光), a supplier of smartphone camera lenses to Apple Inc (US$2.9 billion).
According to Forbes, net worth figures were calculated based on stock prices and exchange rates as of market close on Jan. 3, while private companies were valued based on financial ratios and other metrics similar to those of publicly traded companies.
The magazine said Taiwan’s 50 richest saw their total net worth increase by 7.7 percent, with their aggregate net worth rising to US$112 billion from US$104 billion in November 2018.
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