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Business trends

Nongfu Spring founder Zhong soars into top ranks of China's rich

School dropout who founded bottled water company is worth more than $50bn

SHANGHAI/HONG KONG -- Nongfu Spring's bottled water is known throughout China -- but not so Zhong Shanshan, its founder who was thrust into the upper ranks of the country's billionaires after investor thirst for the company's stock market debut in Hong Kong on Tuesday.

Now Zhong, whose avoidance of the limelight has earned him a "lone wolf" nickname, must prepare for a much higher profile. The school dropout is worth more than $50 billion after success with stock market listings propelled him into the company of internationally known entrepreneurs such as Alibaba Group Holding's Jack Ma and Tencent Holdings' Pony Ma.

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