Anbang Insurance Group
Anbang Tower, No. 6, Jianguomenwai Avenue
Chaoyang District, Beijing 100022
Wu Xiaohui is arguably the most mysterious of China’s property moguls. His net worth is $1.1 billion, according to Wealth-X, which provided data to TRD. According to the Financial Times, he has never granted an interview to the press. But this much seems clear: He has worked his way to the top in part by making influential connections and benefiting from ties to China’s ruling Communist Party.
Born in 1966, Wu grew up in rural Pingyang county in eastern China. Today, relatives and acquaintances of his in the province are major shareholders of Anbang, while Wui holds no shares himself, according to a New York Times investigation in September. The practice is known as “white gloves” and common among wealthy Chinese who seek to keep their riches private.
In his younger years, Wu served as a low-level bureaucrat and worked as a restaurant manager, according to the FT. In 1996, he launched a car dealership company. He founded Anbang in 2004, the same year he divorced his second wife and married the granddaughter of former Chinese leader Deng Xiaoping. Media reports have since speculated that Wu’s marriage into China’s elite helps explain Anbang’s subsequent rise, which really took off with a series of high-profile fundraising successes in 2014.
When in New York, he reportedly holds court at a suite in the Waldorf Astoria, which his company officially bought in January 2015. That same month, he participated in a question-and-answer session at Harvard University, during which he referred toBlackstone’s CEO Steve Schwarzman as a good friend and summed up Anbang’s strategy as “pursuing win-win relationships.” According to Wealth-X, he owns a residence in Beijing, where Anbang is headquartered.