Robert Kuok started in business trading rice, sugar and wheat flour in Malaysia and Singapore. Much of his wealth was derived through his ownership of Wilmar International, the world’s largest palm oil trader.
But real estate has played a key role, too. The 93-year-old mogul serves as chairman of Shangri-La Asia, a brand he launched after building his first hotel in Singapore in 1971. Kuok is also the chairman and largest shareholder of Kerry Properties, a prominent developer in Hong Kong and throughout China and the Asia-Pacific region. — Scott Klocksin