Chairman of China Hongqiao Group Limited and aluminium magnate Zhang Shiping passed away late last week at the age of 73.
Hongqiao made the announcement on Thursday, noting that he also held the positions on the remuneration committee and the nomination committee at the time of his death. An announcement by his hometown newspaper indicated that his passing was the result of an unspecified illness.
Zhang took charge of Hongqiao’s predecessor firm Weiqiao Textile Co Ltd. in 1994, which at that time was in the textiles business. He then transitioned it into aluminium in 2002 and was at the helm as it muscled its way to the top of the global aluminium production heap in 2015.
The firm noted his “invaluable contribution” to its success in its press release, and continued by expressing gratitude for his dedication.
Hongqiao said it would convene an election to choose his successor as soon as possible, but it did not specify a date certain.
Though listed on Hong Kong’s stock exchange 8 years ago, Zhang is understood to have maintained control over around 70 percent of the firm’s stock. As of earlier this year, Forbes estimated his net worth to be approximately US$4.7 billion, good for 484th on its list.
As of Zhang’s passing, Hongqiao’s board consists of 9 individuals, with Zhang’s wife Zheng Shuliang, Zhang Bo, and Zhang Ruilian remaining as executive directors. Zhang Bo, who is Zhang Shiping’s son, is also the firm’s chief executive officer. Zhang’s son-in-law Yang Congsen, Zhang Jinglei, and Chen Yisong are non-executive directors, and Xing Jian, Han Benwen, and Dong Xinyi are independent non-executive directors. Zhang Hao serves as Chen Yisong’s alternate.
Zhang was also a non-executive director at Weiqiao Textile Co Ltd. at the time of his passing. The firm is operated by his daughter Zhang Hongxia.