The rich just got richer—including the Philippines’ Manny Villar, who remains the country’s richest person.
This is according to Forbes, which released its annual billionaire list on Tuesday, April 6. The magazine reported the business tycoon’s net worth at $7.2 billion—an increase of $1.6 billion, compared to his reported $5.6 billion last year.
Ranking as the country’s richest for the third straight year, Villar ranks as the 352nd richest person in the world this year. Last year, he was the 286th.
Villar is the chairman of mall operator Vista Mall and chairs the real estate company Vista Land & Landscapes, the memorial lot developer Golden Bria Holdings,mall operator Vistamalls, and home improvement retailer AllHome Corp.
Earlier this year, Bloomberg also named Villar as the country’s richest, with an estimated net worth of $6.72 billion.
Sixteen other Filipinos made it in Forbes’ annual billionaire list, including ports magnate Enrique Razon ($5B), who is second richest in the country (and the world’s 561st). Lucio Tan ranked third in the country with a net worth of $3.3 billion,
Hans Sy and Herbert Sy, heirs to the late tycoon Henry Sy, and taipan Andrew Tan follow the ranking, with a $3 billion net worth each.
Harley Sy, Henry Sy, Jr., and Teresita Sy-Coson, also from the Sy family, all have a net worth of $2.7 billion, putting them on the Forbes billionaire list. Elizabeth Sy of SM Investments and Tony Tan Caktiong of Jollibee Food have a net worth of $2.4 billion each.
Ramon Ang ($2.2 billion), Inigo Zobel ($1.4 billion), Lance Gokongwe ($1.2 billion), and Roberto Ongpin ($1.2 billion), Ricardo Po Sr. and family ($1.1 billion), and Edgar Sia II ($1.1 billion) complete the list.
Of these billionaires, only Roberto Ongpin’s wealth dipped compared to his net worth from the previous year. Forbes reported that Ongpin, who chairs Alphaland, had a net worth of $1.7 billion in 2020, $500 million lower than his estimated $1.2 billion net worth this year.
Among everyone else’s wealth in the Philippine list of billionaires ballooned during the pandemic. For instance, Razon is $1.6 billion compared to last year.
But this is a trend not unique to the Philippines. As Forbes noted, this year’s annual list of billionaires “exploded to an unprecedented 2,755--660 more than a year ago.” There are 493 new billionaires included in this year’s list and 250 who reentered the list this year. “A staggering 86% are richer than a year ago,” Forbes noted.
The global list is led by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, who has topped Forbes’ billionaire list for the fourth consecutive year, with a net worth of $177 billion. Elon Musk ranks second with $151 billion.