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Alibaba's Jack Ma Dethroned as China's Richest Man

Pawnshop for Ferraris

Feb.04.201500:53

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Alibaba founder Jack Ma has been knocked off his perch as China's richest man by "new energy king" Li Hejun, according to the Hurun's 2015 Global Rich List.

Li, the chairman of China's largest privately-owned clean-energy company, Hanergy Holdings, is now the country's richest man, with a net worth of $26 billion. Last year, he held the third spot.His wealth has ballooned thanks to a surge in shares of Hanergy Holdings' Hong Kong listed subsidiary, Hanergy Thin Film Power Group, which rallied over 255 percent in 2014. The firm, however, recently came under scrutiny for alleged unconventional accounting practices.

"'New Energy King' Li Hejun becomes the twelfth Number One China has had in the past 16 years, underlying once again the dynamism of the Chinese economy. In that same period, Bill Gates has been the only Number One in the U.S.," said Rupert Hoogewerf, Chairman and Chief Researcher of Hurun Report.

Ma, meantime, slipped two places to take the third place, with a personal fortune of $24.5 billion. He's the world's 34th wealthiest person.

Pawnshop for Ferraris

Feb.04.201500:53

IN-DEPTH

-- Ansuya Harjani, CNBC.com

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