Philippines’ Richest 2018: Real Estate Tycoons Post Gains Amid Losses For Most Others

Golden Bria’s Manny Villar is number 2 on the Philippines rich list. Photo via forbes.com

By Grace Chung/Forbes.com – This story is part of Forbes’ coverage of Philippines’ Richest 2018. See the full list here.

There’s been a general lift in Philippine real estate and construction fortunes, and then there’s Manny Villar. His wealth has tripled over the past year, making him now the country’s second richest. Shares in his Golden Bria (formerly Golden Haven) leapt a staggering 1,300% in the first quarter, as a profitable business in burial services was joined with a new Villar vehicle for developing housing projects and condos for middle-class families. Investors saw in the mix a basis for the magnate building telecom infrastructure, an especially attractive play.

The 50 ranking had an unusually volatile year, with 19 seeing net worths shift 20% or more, compared with just 12 last year. Ramon Ang, Inigo and Mercedes Zobel and Eduardo Cojuangco were among those on the upside, thanks to shares in their San Miguel, the country’s largest beer brewer, rising 70% from a year ago. In July it announced plans to invest $1 billion in ten new breweries across the Philippines and in other countries.

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