Zong Qinghou

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Name: Zong Qinghou 

Country: China

Date of birth: 1945

Education: High School 

Type of Business: Beverages  

Main Achievements: Zong Quinghou is a world-renowned Chinese billionaire who laid the foundations of Hangzhou Wahaha Group. The triumphant billionaire entrepreneur is also the Chief Executive Officer of his company, which deals with beverages. He has grown the beverage company from a store in a school into the largest company of China selling teas, milk drinks, and bottled water. Zong is also an unequivocal supporter of lowering taxes to foster economic development and growth in his country. As of 020, the entrepreneur enjoys a net worth of $8.2 billion. He appeared in China’s Rich List of 2019 as well as in the Forbes Billionaires List of 2020. Moreover, he received the honor of being ranked among the richest men in the world with an accumulation of $11.6 billion in 2014. According to Hurun Report’s China Rich List, he was the richest Chinese in 2012 and the second-richest Chinese in 2013. Zong’s entrepreneurial achievements are the testimony of his remarkable business skills. 

Something Interesting About Zong Qinghou: During his foreign trips, Zong visits the local markets to accumulate some useful information through firsthand research. Moreover, he is of the view that poor people should not be given donations straight away since it will hamper their motivation to work hard and achieve something in life. 


Zong Qinghou was born in Zhejiang, an eastern province of China, in 1945. He is married and is the father of one daughter, Kelly. His mother took her retirement as soon as he concluded his high school; hence he had to return to her. Zong’s lack of proper education became a hurdle in the attainment of a good job. He started working hard and began selling milk at a children’s school in the Chinese district of Shangcheng. It was not late that he became the head of the Wahaha business that traded fizzy drinks, ice, and stationary. He expanded his business by forming a partnership with two teachers. He borrowed 140,000 Yuan from them and stepped into the production and distribution of milk. Zong clung to persistent hard work and sheer determination to transform his small shop into a successful business in just two years. 

Zong’s exemplary work ethic and a strong commitment to work contributed to the unprecedented success of Wahaha in China. Apart from founding the largest homegrown beverage company, he also established Wahaha Nutritional Food Factory based in Hangzhou. The success of his gigantic business was determined by the popularity and demand of his nutritional drinks. Considering the enormous success of Zong’s company, the Chinese government decided to hand him over a canning factory whose sales were deteriorating. In 1991, the canning company came together with Zong’s company. Employees of the canning factory strongly opposed the merge of the two companies since they accused Zong of being an advocate of capitalism. 

Zong’s wife, Shi Youzhen, serves as Wahaha’s Purchasing Manager. Their daughter, Kelly, is the heir apparent to his company. She received her education from Southern California’s Pepperdine University. Previously, Zong decided to acquire permanent US residence. He took the step to make his travel to the US convenient in order to take care of his investments in the country. Nevertheless, in 2008, the public got familiar with Zong’s acquisition of a Green Card, resulting in his deteriorated reputation. His status; however, was considered abandoned in 2013 since he did not visit the US for quite many years. 

Chinese Trade Union has granted the ‘National Excellent Entrepreneur’ award to Zong in recognition of his contribution to the business industry. His further accolades include ‘Model of Patriotism to Support the Armed Forces,’ ‘National Excellent Manager,’ and the ‘First Chinese Entrepreneurs Entrepreneurship Prize.’ State Science Commission also awarded the entrepreneur with the ‘State Spark Second Prize’ in 1992. In addition to that, he got the honor of being called the ‘China Management Master’ in 1994. Zong is also the Chinese National People’s Congress delegate.