Li Ka-shing, the richest man in Hong Kong, has announced his retirement just before his 90th birthday in July. The tycoon formally passing the reins of his $100bn retail, infrastructure and property empire to his elder son Victor Li after a decades-long apprenticeship.
Li was a wartime refugee who used to sweep factory floors in Hong Kong for a living. The 89-year-old business genius built his Cheung Kong group from humble beginnings making plastic flowers in the 1950s to a global conglomerate that owns 52 ports around the world, numerous energy and utility companies, the 3 “Three” mobile phone network and retail chains including Superdrug and Watsons.
Known in Hong Kong as “Superman” for his dealmaking prowess, Mr Li on Friday said he would retire as chairman of CK Hutchison, his main holding company, and CK Asset, his property group. He named 53-year-old Victor Li as his replacement.
After his retirement, Li will become senior consultant of CK Group and keep the job as chairman of “Li Ka-shing Foundation”.