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#154 Goh Cheng Liang $9.20B

Random fact: Sponsors a scholarship at Singapore Management University.

Overview

Goh founded Wuthelam Holdings, a closely held paint and coatings maker. The Singapore-based company's joint venture with Japan's Nippon Paint Holdings has over 16,000 employees, and operations in 15 countries, according to the company's website. It's also the largest shareholder in Nippon Paint, Asia's biggest paint maker.

As of July 21, 2017:
Last change +$281M (+3.1%)
YTD change +$2.80B (+43.8%)
Industry Industrial
Biggest asset 4612 JP Equity
Citizenship Singapore
Age 90
Wealth Self-made
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Goh Cheng Liang's net worth of $9.20B can buy ...

0
troy ounces of gold
0
barrels of crude oil

... and is equivalent to ...

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of the GDP of the United States
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of the total wealth of the 500 richest people in the world
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of the top 100 U.S. college endowments
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of the top 200 U.S. executives’ total awarded compensation
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of U.S. existing home sales
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times the median U.S. household income

Latest News

Net Worth Summary

Cash
Private asset
Public asset
Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

The majority of Goh's fortune is derived from his 39 percent stake in publicly-traded, Osaka-based Nippon Paint. He owns the shares through Nipsea International, which is wholly owned by the family's holding company Wuthelam Holdings, according to Nippon Paint's 2016 annual report. Nippon Paint is the largest paint maker in Asia, according to the Paint & Coatings Industries 2016 global top 10 list.

Wuthelam Holdings also has an interest in Nippon Paint's Asia subsidiaries, through a joint venture with Nippon Paint. It owns 49 percent of 12 joint ventures, half of Nippon Paint's Indian unit and 40 percent of Nippon Paint Marine Coatings and Nippe Trading, according to a May 2014 presentation by Nippon Paint. Nippon Paint disclosed the revenue and operating income of its Asia subsidiaries in a 2016 investor presentation, dated Feb. 14, 2017. Wuthelam's stakes in these units are valued using Nippon Paint's enterprise value-to-Ebit and price-to-earnings multiples.

His assets also include superyacht White Rabbit. The value of his cash investments is based on an analysis of dividends, insider transactions, asset sales and taxes, and includes the sale of shopping mall Liang Court in 1999, as well as a quarter stake in technology service provider Omni in 2001.

Goh and his family own all of Wuthelam, according to a submission by Wuthelam subsidiary Nipsea International to the Jasdaq Securities Exchange on Jan. 22, 2013. As founder, Goh is credited with the entire stake. His son Goh Hup Jin is chairman of Nipsea Holdings.

No response was received to e-mailed messages requesting comment on Goh's net worth from Wuthelam's subsidiary Nipsea.

Biography

Birthdate: 6/27/1927
Family: Married, 1 child

Goh Cheng Liang was born in 1927 to a father who was unemployed and a mother who washed laundry, according to an interview with Singapore's Business Times in 1997.

When the British army auctioned off surplus stocks of rotten paint in 1949, he bought several barrels and started mixing the paint with colors. He created his first business under the brand Pigeon Paint. When the Korean War broke out in 1950, the Singaporean government introduced restrictions on imports and Pigeon's domestic sales soared.

He went to Denmark to learn paint manufacturing technology and on his return agreed to partner with Japan's Nippon Paint Holdings. They formed Singapore-based Nipsea Group in 1962, which became one of the region's largest paint makers. The billionaire made an unsolicited takeover bid for Nippon Paint in January 2013, withdrew it two months later, and agreed to a strategic alliance with Nippon Paint in February 2014 that saw Wuthelam increase its stake in its Japanese partner to 39 percent stake.

Goh Cheng Liang's holding company, Wuthelam, diversified into real estate, property developments and logistics, and financed the construction of Singapore's Liang Court mall and Mount Elizabeth Hospital in the 1970s and 1980s.

His son Goh Hup Jin is the chairman of Nipsea Group. The billionaire lives in Singapore.

Milestones
  • 1945 Sells fishing nets during World War II.
  • 1949 Begins selling paint under his own Pigeon brand.
  • 1959 Becomes a distributor for Nippon Paint.
  • 1962 Nipsea Group is formed.
  • 1999 Sells Singapore shopping center Liang Court.
  • 2001 Sold Omni Industries to Canada's Celestica.
  • 2014 Agrees to take 30 percent stake in Nippon Paint.
  • 2014 Gives $50 million to cancer research in Singapore.