China’s Yang Emerges as Billionaire With Golden Dragon

Yang Zhimao, the chairman of Guangdong Golden Dragon Development Inc., has become a billionaire after the Dongguan, China-based conglomerate soared more than 30 percent since December.

Yang and Zhu Fenglian, a person described in Golden Dragon’s annual report as a “close family member,” control half of the Shenzhen-listed company. The stake is worth more than $1 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.

“The company’s financial holding platform has much room for expansion in the future,” Zhao Xianghuai, a Shanghai-based analyst at Guotai Junan Securities Co., said in a Jan. 28 research note. Zhao, who initiated coverage of the stock with a “buy” rating.

Golden Dragon’s rise has been fueled by its acquisition of a 66 percent stake in Zhongshan Securities Co., and by the actions of the China Securities Regulatory Commission, which lifted a 14-month ban on initial public offerings. The moratorium was put in place in October 2012 in an effort to crack down on fraud and misconduct. The CSRC issued a reform plan for IPOs in November and resumed the approval of new listings.

Chinese public offerings are expected to accelerate to a record pace, with an estimated 60 to 80 sales each month from March to June, Chen Li, chief China equity strategist at UBS, said at a Jan. 13 briefing in Shanghai.

Water, Securities

Golden Dragon’s profit may rise 129 percent to 53.9 million yuan ($8.9 million) in 2013, once Zhongshan Securities’ fourth-quarter profits are included in its results, the company said in a Jan. 16 filing with Shanghai Stock Exchange.

The company controls a tap water supplier in southern China’s Guangdong province and 40 percent of Dongguan Securities Co., according to its website.

An investor relations executive, who asked not to be identified in accordance with company policy, confirmed Yang’s shareholding and didn’t comment on his net worth. Yang didn’t respond to phone requests for comment.

— With assistance by Michael Wei

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