One of China’s richest families just gave their 24-year-old son a $3.8 billion gift. Photo\: Jason Lee.
INTERNATIONAL - One of China’s richest families just gave their 24-year-old son a $3.8 billion gift.

The founder of Sino Biopharmaceutical Ltd. and his wife are transferring about a fifth of the company’s share capital to their son Eric Tse, making him one of the world’s richest people overnight.

The grant of 2.7 billion shares, detailed in a Hong Kong exchange filing late Tuesday, adds to a tsunami of Asian wealth that’s being passed down to the next generation. In 2018, four Chinese tycoons placed more than $17 billion into family trusts, while many of Hong Kong’s biggest developers are engaged in succession planning. One major advantage is that Hong Kong has no tax on gifts or inherited wealth.

Sino Biopharmaceutical and Tse didn’t respond to messages seeking comment on the gift.

The son of Tse Ping and Cheng Cheung Ling, Eric Tse was born in Seattle, attended primary school in Beijing and secondary school in Hong Kong, then graduated with a finance degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, according to an article on the business school’s website. He established the China Summit Foundation, a charitable organization that supports education and cultural initiatives and was a Schwarzman Scholar at Beijing’s Tsinghua University.

Tse is also active on Instagram, where he shares shots of himself parasailing and partying with Rihanna. Other selfie-mates include model Bella Hadid, basketball star Yao Ming and Monaco’s Princess Charlene. His most recent post is from Beijing, where he attended the 70th anniversary of the People’s Republic of China.

He made clear though that he’ll try to keep a low profile and “will endeavor not to participate” in efforts by news organizations to include him individually on global wealth rankings, and would recommend instead that the fortune be ascribed to “the Tse Ping family,” according to the statement.


Outside of his parents, that includes older sister Theresa. The combined value of Sino Biopharmaceutical shares held by the four is about $8.5 billion, Bloomberg calculations show.


In a separate statement Wednesday, Sino Biopharmaceutical named Eric Tse an executive director and member of the company’s executive board committee, effective the same day. His compensation is set at HK$3.9 million ($498,000) a year, plus discretionary bonuses.


He appears as a director on at least five other company boards in Hong Kong, including Charoen Pokphand Skyland Group Ltd., a firm that uses the name of the conglomerate of Thailand’s richest family.

Tse Ping, who has been a national committee member of the Chinese People’s Political Consultative Conference, the nation’s top political advisory body, will remain president of Sino Biopharmaceutical after the share transfer. Its purpose is to refine the management and inheritance of the family’s wealth, according to the statement.

Eric’s shares will be held via holding companies Thousand Eagles Ltd. and British Virgin Islands-based Remarkable Industries Ltd.

BLOOMBERG