(Yicai Global) May 14 -- Tencent's Pony Ma and Alibaba's Jack Ma still dominate the ranks of China's wealthiest people, but have been joined in the top 10 for the first time by Zhang Yiming, founder of the world's most valuable startup Bytedance Technology.
The Tencent founder ranked first with personal fortune of CNY226 billion (USD32.84 billion), according to the Rich List 500 that financial monthly magazine New Fortune published yesterday, based on data from the end of last year.
Alibaba's founder followed closely with CNY220.6 billion. Bytedance's Zhang replaced Li Shufu, the head of automaker Geely, and his son Li Xingxing in the top 10. Li and his son fell to 18th place due to a sharp decline in the car firm's market value.
This year, the magazine lowered the inclusion threshold for its rich list by CNY1.9 billion (USD226 million) to CNY4.5 billion, partly because of last year's stock market slump.
The individuals who made it into the Rich List 500 had a combined fortune of CNY810.1 billion (USD117.7 billion). That's 18 percent lower than last year's CNY956.7 billion. Their per capita wealth also fell 15 percent to CNY16.2 billion from CNY19.1 billion.
China's leading property developers stayed firmly in the upper echelon. Evergrande Group Chairman Xu Jiayin, Wanda Group Chairman Wang Jianlin, and Yang Huizhen, the vice chairman of Country Garden, retained the third to fifth slots. But Wang's fortune has shrunk dramatically, falling by almost a third to CNY149.9 billion this year from 2016, according to the list.
As Alibaba Group Holding and its affiliates have become important shareholders of more than 20 listed companies, Jack Ma also has a direct influence on companies with a total valuation of up to CNY4.5 trillion (USD653.8 billion).
Shenzhen-based New Fortune has been compiling its annual China rich list since 2003. This year's was the 17th. Its most famous ranking was for the best brokerage analyst, which it started in 2003 and stopped last year following a scandal.