The 10 richest people in Asia
Net worth: $14.4 billion
Source of wealth: Self-made; Xiaomi
Like several of his fellow 21st-century Chinese billionaires, Lei Jun earned his $14.4 billion fortune in tech. His smartphone maker, Xiaomi, became the fourth-largest smartphone vendor in the world, and the largest in China, within about three years of its founding.
Lei got his start in tech shortly after college when he joined Kingsoft, a Chinese software company similar to Microsoft, as an engineer. During his tenure at Kingsoft, Lei served as chief technology officer, president, and CEO, succeeding in taking the company public in 2007 before resigning. In 2010, after spending a few years as a venture capitalist, the already-wealthy Chinese entrepreneur founded Xiaomi with a former Google China executive. Lei was appointed chairman of Kingsoft in 2011 and forged a partnership between the two companies to provide cloud-storage capabilities for his phones.
Xiaomi, often referred to as "the Apple of China," is now the second most valuable private-tech company in the world, with a $46 billion valuation. But as sales growth has slowed, experts are contemplating the sustainability of Xiaomi's business model in overseas markets.
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Even with a net worth of $26.5 billion, Alibaba's Jack Ma is only the second-richest person in Asia.
The largest continent by size and population, Asia has also grown into a financial powerhouse. It's home to the world's second-, third-, and ninth-largest economies in China, Japan, and India, respectively. The continent is also the playground for 10 of the planet's 50 wealthiest people, who are worth a combined $205 billion.
With a fortune of $29.2 billion, real estate mogul Wang Jianlin is the richest person in Asia, followed by Alibaba founder Jack Ma at $26.5 billion. India's wealthiest man, industrial magnate Mukesh Ambani, rounds out the top three with a net worth of $24.8 billion.
This comes from new data provided to Business Insider by Wealth-X, a company that conducts research on the super-wealthy, featured in our recent ranking of the world's richest people. Wealth-X maintains a database of dossiers on more than 110,000 ultra-high-net-worth people, using a proprietary valuation model to discern the size of their fortunes.
Read on to learn more about the richest people on the world's largest continent, who range from tech tycoons to real estate giants.