10 Richest People in Singapore

For a country that is ranked among the top 5 richest countries in the world, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that it is home to some of the world’s richest. In Forbes’ 2019 list, the 50 richest Singaporeans possess a combined net worth of at least $130 billion. The top ten richest Singaporean residents are all wealthy billionaires. The list below shows who they are and how they made their billions.

Zhang Yong

Zhang Yong replaced Robert and Philip Ng to top the 2019 list of richest Singaporeans with a net worth of about $13.8 billion. China’s wealthiest restaurateur, who is a naturalized Singaporean citizen founded the first of his Haidilao international restaurant chains in 1994. After going public in September 2018, he runs over 500 outlets across Singapore, the United States, Japan, South Korea and China. His chain of restaurants is particularly noted for its flawless customer service including giving customers massages and manicures while waiting, as well as the attractive benefits its staff enjoy.

Robert & Philip Ng of Far East Organization

Singapore’s richest brothers, Philip and Robert Ng inherited their wealth from their father, a real-estate tycoon named Ng Teng Fong. Ng Teng Fong founded the biggest private property developing company in the country known as Far East Organization. Robert, a former barrister oversees the Hong Kong arm known as Sino Group, together with his son Darryl, while Philip mans the company’s local operations as its CEO. With a combined net worth of about $12.1 billion, the Ng brothers have constantly found themselves on the list of richest people for the past decade. During the Coronavirus pandemic, Far East Organization contributed massively to relief efforts, sending lots of food packets daily to the Tan Tock Seng Hospital and the NUH.

Eduardo Saverin

Eduardo Saverin
Eduardo Saverin

Brazilian born businessman Eduardo Saverin is the co-founder of Facebook and one of the world’s youngest billionaires. His wealth, a net worth of about $10.6 billion is largely accredited to his 2 % ownership share in Facebook. Well-known for investing into Asia and Singapore’s tech industry, he is also the founder of B Capital, a venture fund which invests in global tech companies. In 2012, Saverin renounced his United States citizenship before relocating to Singapore.

Goh Cheng Liang

Nippon Paint is one of South East Asia’s biggest paint producers. Goh Cheng Liang, founded the company in 1955 as a local paint distributor, eventually becoming the country’s first paint manufacturer. Goh owns a 39 percent share in the Japanese division, and has a net worth of at least $10.4 billion. In April 2019, Nippon Paint acquired Dulux Group for US$ 2.7 billion. Cheng Liang has also gained a name for himself for his philanthropy. Through his Goh Foundation, he has rendered support to medical research, developmental initiatives and educational scholarships, notable among which is a $50 million donation to the National Cancer Centre. His son, Goh Hup Jin became the chairman for Nippon Paint in 2018.

Kwek Leng Beng

Real Estate Tycoon, Kwek Leng Beng has an estimated net worth of about 8.8 billion dollars. Majority of his wealth is generated from Hong Leong Group Singapore – a company started by his father in 1941.The group owns at least 150 properties in more than 20 countries mainly through its sub company, City Developments Limited, to which Kwek is Executive Chairman.

The group’s revenue is expected to increase with the privatization of Millennium & Copthorne Hotels, and the completion of its flagship building, Republic Plaza. He initially studied in London to become an attorney, later choosing to manage the family business in Singapore after graduating.

Kwek has been internationally recognized for his business expertise, receiving several awards including the Lifetime Achievement Award during the Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship Awards. In 2018, he received the Diamond Award at Singapore’s Tatler Ball.

Wee Cho Yaw

With a net worth of about 6.6 billion dollars, Wee Cho Yaw is the sixth richest person in Singapore. The United Overseas Bank, the country’s third largest financial organization was founded by his father Wee Kheng Chin in 1935. Retiring in April 2018, he serves as the UOB’s chairman emeritus, while his son Wee Ee Chong is its CEO. Aside the UOB, the family also owns Kheng Leong, a property development company which purchased US $290 million worth of apartments numbering about 45 in The Nassim, in 2017.They are also the owners of Haw Par corporation, the manufacturers of the Tiger Balm Chinese ointment. His daughter Wei Ling is also the director of Pan Pacific Hotels.

Khoo Family

Former richest man in Singapore, Khoo Teck Puat formed Maybank during 1960, leaving behind 15 children from two marriages when he passed away in 2004. The Khoo family has an estimated net worth of over 6.4 billion dollars. Daughter Mavis Khoo-Oei is the chairperson for the Goodwood Group of Hotels; her sister, Elizabeth manages the York Hotel while their brother Eric Khoo who isn’t involved in the family’s businesses has gained prominence in the film industry. The Khoo siblings are also recognized for their philanthropy through the Khoo foundation which built the Khoo Teck Puat Hospital. The foundation is expected to pump another $50 million into the building of the Khoo Teck Puat- National University Children’s Medical Institute Pediatric Ambulatory Centre.

Kwee Brothers

The Kwee Brothers namely Liong Keng, Liong Seen, Lion Phing and Lion Tek, have a combined net worth of at least $5.9 billion and are the owners of Pontiac Land, which is a collective of several luxury hotels and office towers across Singapore. Their leading properties include the Capella, Conrad Centennial, the Regent and Ritz-Carlton Millenia as well as the Millenia Tower.  

Their Indonesian father, Henry Kwee founded Pontiac Land in 1958 when he migrated to the island-nation. The brothers also own a huge stake in the Jean Nouvel-designed Tower Verre in New York, close to the Museum of Modern Art. This property alone is worth at least $ 500 million.

Kuok Khoon Hong

Wilmar International CEO and chairman, Kuok Khoon Hong is one of the wealthiest Singaporeans with a net worth of at least $US3 billion. His company happens to be one of the largest agri-commodity producers worldwide, and he has gained more than 4 decades of experience in edible oils, grains and oilseeds plantations. He is also noted for overseeing several oil palm plantation projects across Africa and Asia.

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