Friday, August 31, 2012

Thai billionaire 40th on Forbes' wealthiest

Thailand's Charoen Pokphand Group's Dhanin Chearavanont retains top spot of Thailand's 40 Richest on Forbes list, with US$9 billion in net worth.

Along with him, others making up the 40 richest list showed the collective wealth of $55 billion which went up by 22 per cent from $45 billion in the previous year, according to Forbes Magazine.

"For the second year in a row, Thailand's richest people have done remarkably well, seeing a more than 20 per cent rise in their collective wealth. Some of the country's top business

leaders have also dominated the headlines with their expansion plans in Southeast Asia and beyond," the magazine said.

No. 3 on the list, Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi, whose company - Thai Beverage, the country's largest brewer and distiller - has been aggressively bidding for Asia Pacific Breweries. His net worth went up by $1.4 billion to $6.2 billion this year.

Others are looking to take on international rivals on the strength of an expected 6 per cent growth in the Thai economy this year, lower taxes and a firm stock market. Those expanding abroad include Kraisorn Chansiri (No. 25, $545 million), whose Thai Union Frozen Products is on a foreign-acquisition spree, and Aloke Lohia (No. 8, $1.6 billion), who is starting one of thefirst polyethylene terephthalate businesses in Africa.

Dhanin Chearavanont retains his top spot as the country's wealthiest. The leader at the helm of agribusiness conglomerate, Charoen Pokphand Group, boasts an estimated net worth of $9 billion, up $1.6 billion from last year. Over the past year, the stock price of the world's third-biggest operator of 7-Eleven stores, CP All, grew 27 per cent, while his food producers, Charoen Pokphand Foods and PT Charoen Pokphand, also fared well.

The Chirathivat family saw its fortune increase by 60 per cent to $6.9 billion as they moved up two places to No. 2. The descendants of Central Group's late founder, Tiang Chirathivat, share a fortune which is largely derived from their ownership of Central Retail and Central Pattana.

Medical tourism added two new comers to the list: Chalerm Harnphanich (No. 33), who created a $285 million fortune with his Bangkok Chain Hospital, and Wichai Thongtang (No. 20), who saw his net worth climb to $670 million following the merger of his Phyathai Hospital Group with Bangkok Dusit Medical in 2011.

The 50 per cent uptick in shares of Bangkok Dusit Medical Services also added to the fortunes of 2 other listees, Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth (No. 9, $1.2 billion), and Pongsak Viddayakorn (No. 27, $400 million).

This year's list includes two returnees: Phornthep Phornprapha & family (No. 17), who own the Siam Motors conglomerate, have an estimated fortune of $900 million, and Paiboon Damrongchaitham (No. 40) with a wealth of $200 million. Dubai-based Thaksin Shinawatra, the former premier and brother to Prime Minister Yingluck Shinawatra, ranks number 23 on the list with wealth of $600 million.

The list was compiled using shareholding and financial information obtained from the families and individuals, stock exchanges, analysts and Thailand regulatory agencies. Public fortunes were calculated based on stock prices and exchange rates as of Aug 20. Private companies were valued based on similar companies that are publicly traded.

The minimum net worth needed to make this year's list was $200 million.

The top 40 richest in Thailand are:

1) Dhanin Chearavanont; US$9 billion

2) Chirathivat family; $6.9 billion

3) Charoen Sirivadhanabhakdi; $6.2 billion

4) Yoovidya family; $5.4 billion

5) Krit Ratanarak; $3.1 billion

6) Chamnong Bhirombhakdi & family; $2.4 billion

7) Vichai Maleenont & family; $1.8 billion

8) Aloke Lohia; $1.6 billion

9) Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth; $1.2 billion

10) Vanich Chaiyawan; $1.16 billion

11) Thongma Vijitpongpun, $1.1 billion

12) Isara Vongkusolkit & family, $1 billion

13) Boonchai Bencharongkul, $990 million

14) Praneetsilpa Vacharapol, $950 million

15) Surang Prempree, $930 million

16) Prayudh Mahagitsiri, $915 million

17) Phornthep Phornprapha & family, $900 million

18) Anant Asavabhokin, $840 million

19) Keeree Kanjanapas, $810 million

20) Wichai Thongtang, $670 million

21) Sunsurn Jurangkool & family, $650 million

22) Somporn Juangroongruangkit, $610 million

23) Thaksin Shinawatra & family, $600 million

24) William E. Heinecke, $560 million

25) Kraisorn Chansiri, $545 million

26) Chamroon Chiinthammit & family, $500 million

27) Pongsak Viddayakorn, $400 million

28) Nishita Shah Federbush & family, $350 million

29) Worawit Weeraborwornpong, $310 million

30) Vicha Poolvaraluck, $305 million

31) Prateep Tangmatitham, $300 million

32) Pete Bodharamik, $295 million

33) Chalerm Harnphanich, $285 million

34) Niti Osathanugrah, $280 million

35) Roongroj Saengsastra & family, $260 million

36) Chalerm Yoovidhya, $250 million

37) Vichai Raksri-aksorn, $240 million

38) Porndee Leeissaranukul & family, $235 million

39) Prachai Leophairatana & family, $225 million

40) Paiboon Damrongchaitham, $200 million
-Asia News Network (August 30, 2012)

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