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Sy, Ayala join Asia’s 50 richest

The Sys and the Zobels are among this year’s Top 50 Asia’s Richest Families, according to American business magazine Forbes.
Placing ninth on the list is the family of Henry Sy, with a net worth of US$20.1 billion (P1 trillion).
In 43rd place is the Zobel family with a net worth of US$6.13 billion (P311.5 billion).
The wealth profile of Asia’s 50 richest, according to Forbes, uses stock prices and currency exchange rates at the close of markets on Nov. 3. Private companies were valued based on similar companies publicly traded.
Each family must have its wealth rooted in Asia, and at least three generations must have been involved in growing the family fortune.
The collective wealth of the 50 families is worth US$699 billion (P35.5 trillion) this year, up 35 percent from 2016.
Most of the wealth increased mainly because of an overall 25 percent rise in Asia’s stock market for the 12 months ended Oct. 31.
Forbes said younger generations in these families have pushed the company in often surprising directions.
For instance, Sy’s grandson, Howard Sy, was a former investment analyst who started a 24-hour self-storage company called StorageMart a year ago, anticipating that the country’s condominium boom would create demand for storage space.
His company now has two sites in Manila.
India’s Ambani family topped the 2017 list for the first time with a net worth of US$44.8 billion (P2.3 trillion).
The family’s Mumbai-based conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd. owns businesses in energy, petrochemicals, textiles, natural resources, retail, and telecommunications.
The Lees of South Korea’s multinational conglomerate Samsung Group, Seoul, held the second spot with their wealth pegged at US$40.8 billion (P2.1 trillion) this year.
Third on the list is Hong Kong’s Kwok family, which controls real estate owner and developer Sun Hung Kai Properties, and has a net worth of $40.4 billion (P2.05 trillion).