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Asia has new richest woman as property crisis reshapes fortunes

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72-year-old Savitri Jindal is India’s richest woman and the 10th richest person in India of about 1.4 billion people. (Photo: Rajkumar/Mint via Getty Images)

(Bloomberg) – Yang Huiyan is no longer Asia’s richest woman.

In Friday’s Bloomberg Billionaires Index, India’s Savitri Jindal has a fortune of US$11.3 billion thanks to the Jindal Group, a conglomerate involved in industries such as metals and power generation. She has also slipped under her fellow Chinese tycoon Huang Hongwei, who is making her fortune from the chemical fiber company Henri Petrochemical.

It was a dramatic fall for Yang, who inherited his father’s stake in a real estate developer in 2005 and became one of the youngest billionaires on the planet. For the past five years, she has been Asia’s richest woman, reflecting the rapid growth of China’s real estate sector.

Her fortune has more than halved to $11 billion this year, but that decline came as China’s biggest property developer, Country Garden, said it needed to raise shares at a discount this week. Accelerating, stocks plummeted to their lowest level since 2016. Yang, now in her early 40s, owns about 60% of the shares in Country Gardens and her 43% of shares in the Managed Services division.

Also read: Asia’s richest woman loses half her fortune in property crisis

Jindal, 72, is India’s richest woman and the 10th richest person in India of about 1.4 billion people. She became chairman of the Jindal Group shortly after her husband and founder, OP Jindal, died in a helicopter crash in 2005.

Jindal’s net worth has fluctuated a lot in recent years. In April 2020, he fell to US$3.2 billion at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic, reaching US$15.6 billion in April 2022 as commodity prices skyrocketed due to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine. .

Fan, 55, has also seen her fortune dwindle this year, but she is holding up better than other billionaires in China. It reflects the diversity of her business empire, which began as a bankrupt state-owned textile factory in Wujiang, eastern Jiangsu province.

Originally an accountant, Fan founded Hengli Group in 1994 with her husband Chen Jianhua, later expanding into polyesters, petrochemicals, petroleum refining and tourism. The group reported revenue of 732.3 billion yuan (US$109 billion) last year. According to the Bloomberg Wealth Index, Chen’s personal wealth is estimated at her $6.4 billion.

Bloomberg’s list of the 500 richest people in the world includes 68 women, led by Françoise Bettancourt Meyers of L’Oréal, who has a fortune of $75 billion. Her next two on the list are Julia Koch, who has a net worth of around $70 billion, and Alice Walton, who has a net worth of around $59 billion.

—With help from Jack Witzig.

© 2022 Bloomberg LP

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