KEY POINTS …
-30 year old Shangjin “Jin” Lin; already amassed a staggering $659M fortune
–the founder and group managing director of real estate developer Aqualand; founded in 2014; financial backing of his father, Yi Ling ‘s Shenglong Group
–Jin Lin was said to have permanent residency by 2011 and Villa Igiea was purchased without the need for approval by the FIRB
–Aqualand last year became the second biggest shareholder in real estate agency McGrath with a 15% stake
REPORTED DONATIONS by he and his father to the Labor Party … but how likely, is it, that the Coalition did not get their share … perhaps even larger share with Aqualand having been formed in 2014, and residential apartment boom across Sydney in Pyrmont, Lindfield, North Ryde, North Sydney, Barangaroo and Lavender Bay?
Aqualand founder Shangjin ‘Jin’ Lin now country’s seventh-richest person under 40
He’s the seventh-richest young person in the country today with hundreds of millions in the bank — but who is Shangjin “Jin” Lin?
OCTOBER 27, 2019
Young Rich List 2019 – Who made the cut?
They’re some of the biggest and most glittering names in the country and these wildly successful Aussies are also making…
Shangjin “Jin” Lin is just 30 years old — and he’s already amassed a staggering $659 million fortune.
But despite his bulging bank account, most Australians had never heard of him until he made his startling debut on the 2019 Financial Review Young Rich List this week.
Mr Lin, the founder and group managing director of real estate developer Aqualand, was ranked seventh on the coveted list, comfortably beating the likes of fitness queen Kayla Itsines and Afterpay boss Nicholas Molnar.
Mr Lin, the only son of Chinese property billionaire Yi Ling, keeps a famously low profile — despite his company overseeing a string of Sydney apartment projects worth billions.
The uber-wealthy family moved to Australia 16 years ago when Mr Lin was still a teenager, and he went on to study at Sydney’s Maquarie University, graduating with a Bachelor of Commerce.
WHO IS JIN LIN?
Mr Lin’s family have consciously tried to fly under the radar despite their extreme wealth, although his mother Yunhui Lin reportedly set a new property record for the north shore suburb of Waverton when she paid $8.5 million for a property in 2010.
Then, in 2011, the family landed in the news again when they emerged as significant donors to the Labor Party.
According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Mr Lin and his father both donated $50,000 each to the ALP in 2009, while Shenglong (Australia) Investments Group donated $100,000 the following year.
Necessary paperwork associated with the donations weren’t filed on time though, sparking an investigation by the Australian Electoral Commission, and Mr Lin later told Fairfax he and his mother considered politics to be “a personal hobby”.
Little is known about Aqualand managing director Jin Lin, despite his massive fortune.Source:Supplied
The mystery surrounding the $200,000 ALP donations reached a frenzy, because at the time, it wasn’t known whether the donors were Australian citizens or registered voters, or precisely which industry they worked in.
Speculation was so rife that in April 2011, a reporter from New Matilda physically rummaged through an overflowing mailbox at a vacant Chatswood unit which had been listed as the business address of Shenglong (Australia) Investments Group on its AEC return.
However, at the time, no concrete details of the mysterious Lins were revealed.
Then, Mr Lin landed in the headlines again in 2016 after snapping up one of the most exclusive properties in the NSW capital.
In January that year, he picked up 1920s Sicilian-style mansion Villa Igiea in Vaucluse after inking a $52.5 million deal in a private treaty with Austar Communications founder Dr Wayne Burt.
Before the sale, the property — which was originally built for the Grace family of retailers — was raking in an epic $70,000 a week as a short-term rental.
Villa Igiea in Vaucluse sold for $52.5 in 2016.Source:Supplied
*Jin Lin was said to have permanent residency by 2011 and Villa Igiea sold without the need for approval by the Foreign Investment Review Board, which would indicate the sale was legal by that time.
Besides the donation scandal and the headline-grabbing property sale, little else is known of Mr Lin and his personal life.
The company has dozens of Sydney apartment developments under its belt, including up-market The Revy in a heritage-listed waterfront property at Pyrmont and others at Lindfield, North Ryde, North Sydney, Barangaroo and Lavender Bay.
According to the company’s website, it’s real estate portfolio has grown to 18 sites worth a collective $5 billion.
AFR reports Aqualand’s current projects include 415 luxury apartments in North Sydney, with Mr Lin acquiring the site at 168 Walker Street for $157 million.
*Founded in 2014, Aqualand has the financial backing of Mr Lin’s father’s Shanghai-based, multibillion-dollar company, Shenglong Group.
Aqualand’s developments include Blue at Lavender Bay.Source:Supplied
*Last year, the business became the second biggest shareholder in real estate agency McGrath last year, taking a 15 per cent stake worth nearly $14 million.
Aqualand also sponsors and supports cultural and sporting initiatives including The Art Gallery of NSW, The Australian Ballet and Sculpture by the Sea Bondi.
THE YOUNG RICH LIST
Atlassian co-founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar, both 39, topped Friday’s AFR Young Rich List for the eighth year in a row with stunning fortunes of $13.499 billion and $13.215 billion respectively.
Fellow billionaires Melanie Perkins, 33, and Cliff Obreacht, 32, who co-founded graphic design software company Canva, both shared the third position with a combined wealth of $1.350 billion, followed by Envato’s Collis Ta’eed, 40, and Cyan Ta’eed, 38, in fourth place, with $799 million in the bank.
Ori Allon, 39, from Compass Real Estate rounded out the top five with $747 million behind him, followed by 38-year-old Peter Greensill, co-owner of Greensill Farming and board member of the Greensill company, in sixth place with $745 million, up from $412 million last year.
Atlassian co-CEOs Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar are Australia’s richest young people — yet again. Source: AtlassianSource:Supplied
Mr Lin was ranked seventh, while eighth place went to luxury developer Tim Gurner, 37, with $608 million — down from $631 million and third place in 2018.
Ninth place went to 29-year-old Afterpay boss Nicholas Molnar, who has amassed $564 million compared with $341 million in 2018.
And Australia’s fittest couple, Ms Itsines, 28, and Mr Pearce, 27, shared 10th place with a combined $486 million.