PDD’s Colin Huang becomes China’s richest tech billionaire

  • Huang outranks Tencent’s Pony Ma and ByteDance’s Zhang Yiming in the latest Hurun annual ranking.
  • Tesla’s Elon Musk is back as the world’s richest man with a net worth of US$231.6 billion, thanks to record EV shipments.

Colin Huang, the founder of PDD Holdings, has become China’s richest technology entrepreneur after a surge in the value of its US-listed shares, allowing him to surpass the nation’s more illustrious tycoons Pony Ma Huateng of Tencent Holdings and Zhang Yiming of Bytedance.

Huang, the richest tech billionaire in China

According to the annual Hurun Global Rich List 2024 released on Monday, the 44-year-old grew his wealth by 71% from last year to 385 billion yuan ($53.4 billion).

As mentioned by Hurun’s rankings, Ma’s wealth shrank by 10% to 250 billion yuan (US$34.7 billion)as of mid-January this year, while Zhang’s wealth shrank by 8% to 245 billion yuan (US$34 billion). Both slipped by one rung to rank third and fourth, respectively.

PDD’s rising 

Shanghai-based PDD’s American depositary shares rallied 80% in 2023, adding US$91.3 billion to the company’s market value.

Its e-commerce platform Pinduoduo outgrew rivals operated by Alibaba Group Holding and JD.com in the local market. Temu, its overseas platform, also expanded aggressively in offshore markets to capture users. Its overseas platform Temu is also expanding heavily in overseas markets to attract users.

According to US regulatory filings, Huang is PDD’s single largest shareholder with 26.5%, a stake worth US$43.3 billion based on its share price on March 22.

Huang’s wealth surge has seen him jump to 24th place on the world’s richest people list, up from 39th a year ago, according to Hurun.

“Huang for the second year in a row has been the entrepreneur who has grown the most wealth in China,” Rupert Hoogewerf, chairman and chief researcher of Hurun Report, said in a statement. “It’s hard to believe that he has been in the top 30 global entrepreneurs since he founded Pinduoduo less than 10 years ago.”

Also read: TikTok, Temu, Shein: Will China’s Amazon killers succeed?

Billionaires in the US

Although China still has the largest number of billionaires in the world, the number of billionaires in China fell by 155 to 814 in the past 12 months, according to the Hurun Report. In the U.S., their peers increased by 109 to 800, according to the report.

Elon Musk, founder of Tesla and SpaceX, regained the title of richest man with a wealth of 1.67 trillion yuan (US$231.6 billion), courtesy of Tesla’s record shipments and SpaceX’s huge valuation, according to Hurun.


Jennifer Yu

Jennifer Yu is an junior reporter at BTW Media covering artificial intelligence and products. She graduated from The University of Hong Kong. Send tips to j.yu@btw.media.

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