The Corporate Women
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Yang Huiyan: Reshaping China’s Property Sector as a Billionaire Business Leader


Yang Huiyan, a highly successful Chinese businesswoman and property developer, has played a transformative role in the real estate industry. As the chairwoman and majority shareholder of Country Garden Holdings, she holds a prominent position in one of China’s leading property development companies.

Early Path to Wealth

Born in 1981, Yang Huiyan embarked on a journey that positioned her as one of Asia’s wealthiest women. Her father, Yang Guoqiang, founded the real estate company Country Garden in 1997. In 2007, prior to the company’s initial public offering (IPO), Yang Guoqiang transferred 70% of Country Garden’s shares to his daughter, paving the way for her remarkable rise in the business world.

Noteworthy Achievements

Country Garden’s IPO in 2007 proved to be a resounding success, raising approximately $1.6 billion—an amount comparable to Google’s fundraising in the United States in 2004. Yang’s exceptional leadership and foresight contributed significantly to the rapid growth of the company.

As of 2024, Forbes estimates her net worth at 350 crores USD, reflecting her substantial financial success.

Beyond ownership, Yang also served as the vice chairman of the board’s governance committee, playing a crucial role in the company’s financial strategies. Forbes reported that she was instrumental in raising $410 million by selling new shares in 2014.

In February 2023, Yang Guoqiang stepped down from the position of chairman of the board at Country Garden due to age-related reasons. Yang Huiyan succeeded him, marking a new chapter in her already illustrious career.

Challenges and Commitment to Philanthropy

Yang Huiyan faced challenges during the Chinese property sector crisis from 2020 to 2023, experiencing a significant wealth reduction of $28.6 billion since 2021.

Despite these challenges, Yang remains committed to making a positive impact on society. In 2023, she made a substantial philanthropic contribution by donating approximately 55% of her personal stake in a property management firm valued at around $826 million to a charity founded by her younger sister. This act of philanthropy is particularly noteworthy given the challenges in China’s real estate market and Yang’s 80% decline in fortune over the past two years.

While retaining control of over 36% of the shares through voting rights, Yang’s donation to the Guoqiang Foundation Hong Kong signifies her dedication to supporting charitable causes in Hong Kong, the Greater Bay Area, and mainland China. The foundation has committed not to sell the shares for the next decade, emphasising Yang’s long-term commitment to philanthropy.

Yang Huiyan’s journey from inheriting shares to becoming an influential leader in property development demonstrates her resilience, dedication, and commitment to giving back to society. Her story serves as an inspiration to aspiring entrepreneurs and underscores the importance of contributing to the community in times of need.



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