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Billionaires in the Philippine Real Estate Industry

Forbes Magazine recently released their new list of billionaires from all over the world for 2015. The group published the names of the 1,826 most affluent people from various countries which are higher than the 1,645 billionaires who made it in 2014. This indicates that the elite Forbes list just welcomed 290 additional billionaires with just a span of one year.

Out of the 1,826 billionaires, eleven (11) Filipino magnates made it to the prestigious list with merged assets worth $51.9 billion or Php 2.28 trillion – almost close to the 2015 national budget of the Philippine government amounting to Php 2.6 trillion.

The country’s wealthiest individuals and families are involved in various and somehow similar industries. Out of the eleven Forbes-listed Filipino billionaires, nine (9) are involved in the real estate business as developers. This is an impressive sign that the future of real estate in the Philippines will improve and expand in the coming years since these business trailblazers have invested in real estate projects alongside with the increasing purchasing power of Overseas Filipino Workers.

Although notable Filipino billionaires are also into other fields of business such as banks, shopping malls, telecoms, airlines and many others, it is important to know more about their background and the real estate companies they built.

  1. Henry Sy and Family

henry syhenry syWith a current net worth of $12.7 Billion, Forbes Magazine attributed Sy’s growth in fortune this year through the increase of his real estate development ventures, shopping malls, and banking business. Sy also devoted a great amount of investment in City of Dreams Manila resort and casino.

The tycoon and his family built SM Development Corporation (SMDC), a residential property developer which specializes in building condominium projects for the premium middle market. SMDC is the one behind numerous SM Residences structures in different cities and prime areas in Metro Manila. Sy also owns Highlands Prime, Inc, another developer of residential properties in Tagaytay Highlands which is a resort and residential complex in one. Hamilo Coast is another venture of Henry Sy which is a large-scale real estate undertaking focusing on building resort communities near the beach in Nasugbu, Batangas.

  1. Lucio Tan and Family

Now at 80 years old, this business mogul has maintained his entrepreneurial prowess over the years and now with a total net worth of $6.1 billion, he ranks as the second richest man in the country. Aside from owning Asia Brewery, Philip Morris-Fortune Tobacco and Philippine National Bank, Tan and his family also ventured into real estate by creating Eton Properties.

The real estate developer group of Eton does not only focus on creating residential high-rise structures, but they also built the Eton Centris, a commercial building project housing numerous BPO corporations.

  1. Andrew Tan

Ranking number four (4) on the Forbes list of richest people in the Philippines and number three (3) on the list of the most affluent real estate industrialists is Andrew Tan. He currently has a net worth of $5.1 billion and a known genius behind several real estate projects and has earned a reputation for being a builder of townships in the country.

Tan is a property mogul owning Megaworld, Empire East, Global Estate Resorts and many others. Among the many real estate communities that Tan and his companies have developed are McKinley Hill, Eastwood City and Forbes Town Center. He also owns Emperador Distillers and has more than 400 Mc Donald’s restaurants in the country.

  1. John Gokongwei

The fifth richest Filipino on the 2015 Forbes list is John Gokongwei with a net worth of $4.9 billion. He is the chairman of one of the biggest conglomerates in the country. This tycoon is the one behind Robinsons Land which is considered as one of the top property developers in the country which includes the operation of their chain of Robinson’s malls.

Gokongwei is also the owner of Universal Robina which is a well-known producer of snacks in Southeast Asia, budget airline Cebu Pacific and holds a big share in the biggest power distributor in the country, Meralco. Aside from the mentioned businesses, the Gokongweis likewise handle different companies involving telecommunications, retail, hotel and banking.

  1. David Consunji

A well-known construction czar who started as a concrete inspector, Consunji presently owns one of the country’s biggest construction companies, DMCI Holdings. His net worth is currently at $3.9 billion and has been consistently been part of the top ten Filipino billionaires for the past years. He founded DMCI Homes, one of the pillars of Philippine real estate and has built magnificent residential projects such as Rhapsody Residences, Raya gardens, and Acacia Estates just to name a few.

DMCI Holdings has also ventured in other business investments involving water services, mining, power distribution and energy.

  1. George Ty and Family

Popular in the banking and insurance industries, George Ty is currently 83 years old and has a net worth of $3.7 billion. Aside from owning one of the largest banks in the country, Metrobank, he also established Federal Land developing numerous prime residential communities and commercial structures. The real estate company is one of the trusted in the Philippines and known for developing the spectacular 47-storey commercial building in Makati, the GT Tower.

Federal Land is mounting Veritown Fort which will be home to high-end condominium buildings, commercial structures and a new chain of the Hyatt hotel in Bonifacio Global City.

  1. Jaime Zobel de Ayala and Family

With a net worth of $3.4 billion and from the prominent Zobel de Ayala family, the 55-year old business czar is the present Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ayala Corporation. Known for their glorious township projects all over the Philippines, the Ayala Land Inc. is one of the most successful real estate developers in the Philippines not only specializing in creating top notch commercial structures, but focusing on building first-class residential properties as well.

The success of Makati City which became the financial capital of the country is attributed to the development and investments made by the Ayalas. More so, they are responsible for big real estate development projects namely, Circuit Makati, Vertis North, Arca South, Nuvali, Bonifacio Global City, Alviera and many others. Aside from creating residential and commercial structures, the family business conglomerate is likewise involved in mall operation, construction, property management, hotels and resort.

  1. Tony Tan Caktiong and Family

Famous founder of Jollibee which started as two ice cream parlors in 1975, the fast-food king has a net worth of $2 billion and has established other food stores namely Greenwich and Chowking. Jollibee Foods also purchased 70 percent of Mang Inasal in 2010.

Tan Caktiong has also ventured in the real estate business through DoubleDragon which is currently building condominium and shopping mall structures.

  1. Manny Villar

Now 65 years old, Villar is a known politician aside from being a real estate mogul. He is the owner of Vista Land and Lifescapes, Inc which is regarded to be the Philippines’ largest homebuilder and the group includes Camella Homes which specializes in developing residential subdivisions in more than 200 locations across the country. The real estate company of the Villars is also responsible for building first class condo projects, malls and high end township ventures.

At present, Manny Villar’s net worth is $1.5 billion and now expanding into retail businesses through minimarts like All Day Mart.

Real estate in the Philippines has given spine in the economic development of the country. The inclusion of majority of Filipino billionaires who ventured in real estate in the Forbes list is proof that investing in this industry is a reliable endeavor as long as you do it diligently.

Start investing in real estate and it might be a step closer to your dream of landing in the Forbes list in not so distant future.

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