(Yicai Global) Aug. 8 -- Ma Huateng, founder of Chinese internet behemoth Tencent Holdings Ltd. [HKG:0700], has become the country's richest man after share prices continued to soar this week.
Also known as Pony Ma, the Tencent chief executive has overtaken Jack Ma, chairman of tech giant Alibaba Group Holding Ltd. [NYSE: BABA], in terms of wealth. Pony Ma's personal wealth has now reached USD36.1 billion, USD500 million more than his Alibaba counterpart, Forbes data show.
The company's market capitalization grew to HKD3.038 trillion (USD388 billion) yesterday morning, surpassing Alibaba's HKD3.033 trillion and building on impressive growth so far this year. Tencent is now the eighth largest listed firm worldwide in terms of market cap.
The firm reported total revenue of CNY152 billion (USD22.6 billion) last year, with online games and social media accounting for 47 percent and 24 percent, respectively. The company will publish interim earnings results on Aug. 16, with net profit for the second quarter predicted to grow 28.5 percent annually to CNY14.55 billion.
Multiple investment banks remain bullish on Tencent's future growth. Bank of America Merrill Lynch raised its target price forecast to HKD331, while Nomura Securities and Deutsche Bank increased it to HKD341 and HKD327, respectively.
Share prices in the company jumped 66 percent from HKD190 (USD24.3) a share early this year to HKD320.6 at close on Aug. 7.
The share price was HKD328.6 as of 10.23 a.m. on Aug. 8, a record high and up 2.37 percent from close the day before.