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#264 Lucio Tan $6.06B

Random fact: Worked as a janitor to put himself through school.

Overview

Tan is the chairman and majority shareholder of LT Group, an investment company that controls half of the biggest cigarette maker in the Philippines and has interests in banking, breweries and real estate. He also owns a majority stake in PAL Holdings, the parent company of Philippine Airlines, and closely held Eton Properties Group.

As of July 27, 2017:
Last change +$93.0M (+1.6%)
YTD change +$840M (+16.1%)
Industry Diversified
Biggest asset LTG PM Equity
Citizenship Philippines
Age 82
Wealth Self-made
View net worth over:   Max 1 year 1 quarter 1 month 1 week

Relative Value

Lucio Tan's net worth of $6.06B can buy ...

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troy ounces of gold
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barrels of crude oil

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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 U.S. existing home sales
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Latest News

Net Worth Summary

Cash
Private asset
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Misc. liabilities
Confidence rating:

The majority of Tan's wealth is derived from his stakes in publicly traded companies LT Group and PAL Holdings, both of which are based in the Philippines. 

He owns about 90 percent of PAL Holdings, the parent company of Philippine Airlines, through Pasig, Philippines-based Trustmark Holdings, according to a stock exchange filing dated Dec. 31, 2016. 

Tan also controls about 74 percent of LT Group through Pasig, Philippines-based Tangent Holdings, according to a Philippine stock exchange filing dated Dec. 31, 2016. He consolidated his businesses, which includes cigarette maker, Fortune Tobacco, and rum maker Tanduay Holdings, into LT Group in 2012. Fortune Tobacco's joint venture with Philip Morris Philippines Manufacturing is the biggest cigarette business in the Philippines, according to LT Group's website. The holding company also has interests in beermaker, Asia Brewery, as well as banking and real estate.

He bought San Miguel's 49 percent stake in Trustmark in 2014, giving him complete ownership of the holding company. A liability is included to account for his investments in Philippine Airlines, including $750 million borrowed to purchase San Miguel's Trustmark stake and $2 billion spent over 15 years to revive the unprofitable carrier, the Philippine Daily Inquirer reported on June 13, 2013.

His Hong Kong real estate investments have a combined market value of about $2.6 billion, according to the website of Eton Properties Group. Excluding debt calculated at 30 percent, his equity investment is valued at about $1.8 billion. Eton Properties also invested about $5.9 billion in China, according to its website. Excluding debt calculated at 70 percent, his equity interest in those investments are valued at almost $1.8 billion.

Cecilia Pesayco, corporate secretary of LT Group, confirmed his holdings in the publicly traded companies.

Biography

Birthdate: 7/17/1934
Family: Married, 7 children
Education: Far Eastern University, Bachelor's Degree

Tan was born in China's Fujian province in 1934. His family fled to the Philippines to escape the Japan's invasion of China. Tan worked as a janitor to put himself through school. He dropped out of Far Eastern University in Manila, where he was studying chemical engineering, to work in a tobacco factory.

Tan established his own cigarette company, Fortune Tobacco, in 1966. He expanded the business with the introduction of a budget brand called Hope. After the late dictator Ferdinand Marcos had declared martial law, Tan acquired from the government a defunct bank, renaming it Allied Banking Corp. Marcos also gave Tan the license to venture into the brewing business in the 1970s with Asia Brewery, challenging San Miguel's dominance in the beer market. 

After Marcos was ousted in 1986, Tan was accused of tax evasion. It would take 10 years before the case was eventually dismissed by the Supreme Court. He began investing outside the Philippines, setting up Eton Properties about a year later in Hong Kong and using it to pour money into real estate in the city and China. 

Tan started investing in Philippine Airlines in 1992 when it was privatized by then President Corazon Aquino and took over Asia's oldest air carrier three years later. The billionaire sold a 49 percent stake in Philippine Airlines to San Miguel in 2012 and consolidated the rest of his assets in the country under LT Group, formerly Tanduay Holdings. He named his son Michael Tan as the holding company's president. Michael is the child of the billionaire's second wife, Letty, the Philippine Star reported on Aug. 2, 2012.

Milestones
  • 1934 Tan is born in Fujian province.
  • 1966 Starts Fortune Tobacco.
  • 1977 Acquires a defunct bank and renames it Allied.
  • 1986 Establishes Tan Yan Kee Foundation, named after his father.
  • 1987 Sets up Eton Properties in Hong Kong.
  • 1995 Takes control of Philippine Airlines.
  • 1996 Philippine Supreme Court dismisses his tax evasion case.
  • 2012 Names son, Michael Tan, as president of LT Group.
  • 2012 Consolidates Philippine businesses into LT Group.
  • 2015 Bought back San Miguel's 49 percent stake in Philippine Airlines.