Liang Wengen, 56, was China’s richest man last year. The co-founder of Sanyi Group, China’s biggest machinery maker, left his government job in 1986 to start a small welding factory. Now, his company employs 60,000 people in more than 150 countries.
But Liang does have an escape plan: he wants to retire to his hometown in the Central Chinese province of Hunan and spend his time fishing. It would be a huge departure from the grueling schedule the quiet yet ambitious man currently holds down. He spent 260 days last year on business trips, he said in an interview with the Chinese magazine Moneyweek in August. Though there might be other high-profile demands in his future — the self-professed fan of Beijing Opera has been rumored to join the Communist Party leadership in the upcoming 18th Party Congress.