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Singapore's Top 50 Richest People: Forbes 2023

October 17, 2023 Vault@268

Forbes updated their list of Singapore’s 50 richest people for 2023, so we analysed the supposedly best industry to be in, and what makes wealthy people successful.

This is a summary of the kinds of industries Singapore’s top 50 are involved in (some of them have a diversified portfolio hence they are listed more than once here):

  • Fashion & Retail - 1
  • Tech - 1
  • F&B - 3
  • Healthcare - 3
  • Media & Entertainment - 3
  • Manufacturing - 4
  • Finance & Investments - 7
  • Real Estate - 15

Those who did well in the Media & Entertainment industry were mainly game developers. And Manufacturers who excelled were likewise those who delved into producing tech products. The IT industry is only a few decades old but competitive, and the forced adoption of everything digital during the Covid pandemic accelerated the industry growth.

Majority of players in the Real Estate industry were property developers with some hotel owners. And brothers Philip and Robert Ng are the owners of Singapore’s largest private developer and landlord Far East Organisation. They have developed estates for residential (luxury condos), commercial (Woodsquare), retail (Far East and Orchard Shopping Centres), hospitality (Novena Medical Centre) and industrial purposes. Their net worth is $7b each, putting them in number 5 and 3.

There are unicorns like Haidilao’s CEO. It’s a rare occasion in which an F&B owner surpassed all other industries to emerge in the top 4, with 1000s of chain restaurants across East Asia and even the US. If you’ve ever patronised Haidilao, with its unique customer service that goes the extra mile, you can understand why it is so successful. He is in the top 4.

The other unicorn was Manufacturing investor Goh Cheng Liang, who gained majority share in Nippon Paint since the 60s, blossoming into a $14b net worth individual. That puts him in second place.

In a nutshell, Singapore’s real estate is one of the rare few commodities in the world that is considered a safe haven asset in that its prices will always increase due to land scarcity and thriving economy. It is also constantly in demand and readily fetches a hefty price in the rental market. So whether it is a hotel or condo, retail shop or warehouse, rental and sales of property is competitive yet seemingly rewarding.

What Makes People Successful?

It is not to say that by being in another industry separate from these listed above, you stand no chance at making it big yourself. There is virtue in hard work and wisdom in the major investment decisions you make. According to this article in CNBC’s “Six habits of self-made billionaires”, it is in the little everyday things that make wealthy people wise and level-headed in their business dealings. It begins from the in-filling of quietness, which overflows into all they do. They read, they analyse, they consult before they take action. 

Additionally, in this debt.org article summarising an author studying millionaires, goal-setting allows the wealthy to attain or work towards something in the short and long term - they set goals for the day and for 20 years ahead. The author likewise mentions the small habits that come into play, citing the need for healthy regular habits as opposed to “poverty habits” and even poor self-talk. There is nothing sexy about a healthy lifestyle, but there is truth in the saying “health is wealth”... you can always gain more assets but not health and your well-being, hence it is more needful to maintain these.

Successful people don’t gamble everything on a gut feel, listen to friends about the latest crypto fad or impulse-purchase. Furthermore, successful people never made it there alone - they had the support of the right people because they chose their friends and kept important relationships close to them.

At Vault@268, we understand what makes you successful and want to ensure you’re on the right path. Your relationship with us is important and vital to your journey to success. Let us help you on your way today - contact 67377 268.