Friday 17 September 2021 9:41 am

Largest-ever wealth drop: Chinese e-commerce mogul loses $27bn

The founder of a Chinese e-commerce platform has reportedly seen his wealth nosedive $27bn this year – the largest wealth drop in the world on record.

Colin Huang, who made his wealth through his platform Pinduouo (PDD), has suffered as a result of China’s hawkish regulations on internet and technology firms.

The biggest plunge in wealth before Huang’s losses was faced by the chairman of beleaguered real estate giant Evergrande, Hui Ka Yan. The losses amounted to $16bn, as Ka Yan’s real estate empire sinks under an around $30bn debt burden.

China’s crackdown on large tech firms has severely bruised PDD, more so that fellow firm’s Tencent and Alibaba, due mostly to the fact that it is younger and less profitable.

The company, founded in 2015, reached a peak market value of $178bn before falling to about $125bn.

Huang, who owns 28 per cent of the company and is now worth around $35bn, stepped down as CEO of the firm last year and then as chairman in March.

Alongside Jack Ma’s Alibaba, PDD has pledged $1.5bn to help president Xi Jinping’s bid to close China’s wealth gap and ease poverty levels.

Of the 10 billionaires with the largest falls in net worth this year, six are from China, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index.

It signals the power of Beijing’s dominance, as the tech heavyweights grapple with swift and sudden regulatory changes to their markets.