This story appeared in the February/March 2023 issue of Forbes Asia. Subscribe to Forbes Asia
This article is part of a Forbes article on the richest people in Hong Kong in 2023.See full list here.
Hong Kong’s real estate slump hasn’t kept Lee Shaw Kee’s Henderson Land Development from pursuing new endeavors. The company is betting on a market recovery despite weak earnings and share prices amid Covid-19 restraint and rising interest rates. Henderson’s net profit for the first half of 2022 fell by 27% from the same period last year due to higher construction and finance costs, even though revenue increased by 8% to his HK$4.8 billion ( $613 million). Nevertheless, the company is expanding both commercial and residential projects to drive future growth. The founder’s wealth has fallen by $3.9 billion to $30.3 billion since the last time we measured his wealth.
Last November, Henderson Land submitted a design plan for a HK$114 billion landmark development on Hong Kong’s Central Harbourfront with approximately 150,000 square meters of office and retail space. The company won the land tender in November 2021 and plans to complete the first phase in 2027 and the second phase in 2032. The company is also acquiring adjacent old buildings in the Kowloon district for residential renovation projects, including his HK$1.2 billion purchase last September. .
Meanwhile, the recent resumption of quarantine-free cross-border travel with China has spurred Phase 3 sales of One Innovale, the company’s residential project in the city’s New Territories. As of January, over half of the 565 units had been snapped up. Real estate agency CBRE said in its latest report that it expects easing border controls to spur transaction volumes and commercial property investment in the Asia-Pacific region, with Hong Kong ranked fifth among priority cities. Tokyo and Singapore ranked first and second respectively. Lee Shau Kee founded Henderson Rand in his 1976 and stepped down as chairman in 2019, handing the reins to his sons Peter and Martin as co-chairmen.