Page last updated at 09:39 GMT, Tuesday, 29 September 2009 10:39 UK

Buffett-backed man tops rich list

Wang Chuanfu
Mr Wang's fortune jumped after Mr Buffett's investment

Wang Chuanfu, founder of battery and carmaker BYD, has jumped 102 places to top the annual Hurun Report list of China's richest people.

His wealth jumped from $880m (£555m) to $5.1bn after a unit of Warren Buffett's Berkshire Hathaway agreed to buy a 10% stake in BYD for $230m.

Shares in the company, of which Mr Wang owns 27.8%, have surged 387% this year.

BYD started out making batteries for mobile phones but rose to prominence with its petrol electric hybrid car.

Unfound riches

It was founded in 1995 and started working on electric cars in 2003.

In second place was Zhang Yin, founder of recycling and packaging company Nine Dragons Paper. Her fortune was listed as $4.9bn.

The number of people in China known to be worth more than $1bn has risen to 130 from 101 last year, according to the Hurun Reports founder Rupert Hoogerwerf.

But he added that there could be a similar number of billionaires who have not yet been found.



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