This story is part of Forbes’ coverage of Thailand’s Richest 2021. See the full list here.
Pongsak Viddayakorn, the 87-year-old chairman of Principal Capital, saw his net worth climb 37% to $870 million on his property developer-turned-hospital operator’s soaring valuation. By 2023 Principal will add six new hospitals to its 11 in Thailand, grow its network of clinics and build elderly care facilities. The expansion is being funded from the sale of commercial properties including two serviced apartments and an office building in Bangkok.
At the end of last year, Pongsak’s son Satit privately bought a 23% stake in Bumrungrad Hospital Public Co.—whose namesake hospital Bumrungrad in Bangkok pioneered the country’s medical tourism industry—from Bangkok Dusit Medical Services (BDMS) in a 19 billion baht ($596 million) deal.
Ironically, Pongsak cofounded BDMS with fellow lister Prasert Prasarttong-Osoth (No. 8) in 1969, but sold his stake for $723 million in 2012 to acquire Principal Capital in 2013, which Satit helps run.
In an unrelated deal, Ratch Group, Thailand’s largest private power producer by capacity, bought a 10% stake in Principal Capital in May for 1.6 billion baht.