Koon Yew Yin's Blog

Tan Sri Lee Loy Seng: 李莱生 (by Koon Yew Yin)

Koon Yew Yin
Publish date: Fri, 31 Mar 2023, 05:40 PM
Koon Yew Yin
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An official blog in i3investor to publish sharing by Mr. Koon Yew Yin.

All materials published here are prepared by Mr. Koon Yew Yin

I am 90 years old and almost all my contemporizes have passed away. I am writing this short biography   to honour my old friend Tan Sri Lee Loy Seng. I remember he and his 2nd son Hau Hian came to my house with an old bottle of Brandy called “Sar Choon” to celebrate my 60th birthday.

Loy Seng’s father, Lee Meng Hin, was a tin-miner who gave the Malayan economy a boost. His company was passed on to one of his sons, Lee Wan Seng, and the younger Loy Seng worked as an employee during the early years of his life.

The British invented tin dredgers. The above photo is the last tin dredger left behind in Batu Gajar, Perak.

The dredgers could not recover all the tin hidden between the rocks. The Chinese miners could recover the tin between the rocks by pumping up the sand, mud and tin between the rocks to flow on the slope of a timber palong as shown above.  Due to the force of gravity, water pushes the sand and mud down the palong and leaving the tin behind. That was how many of the Chinese tin miners including Lee Loy Seng make a lot of money.  

During the Malayan Emergency, many British firms and trading houses sold off their assets, including rubber plantations at very low prices. Lee Loy Seng saw the opportunity to invest in these lands, subsequently turning them into rubber plantations. With the price of rubber increasing immensely due to industrial rise, he built up his fast blossoming business. Lee founded the company Kuala Lumpur Kepong Berhad, which became and still is one of the leading plantation owning companies in Malaysia.

Lee Loy Seng was awarded the titles of Dato' Seri in 1974, and Tan Sri in 1987.

Lee was a member of Malaysian Chinese Association (MCA), president of Ipoh Municipal Council in 1976, and a senator from 1971 to 1980. From 1978 to 1992, he was the president of Perak Chinese Maternity Hospital (a private non-profit hospital that gives free treatment to the poor). He was the chairman of Multi-Purpose Holdings ran into financial difficulties in the mid-1980s, he was invited by MCA to return as a director on a board of prominent Chinese businessmen, headed by "Suger King" Robert Kuok, to restore it back to health. He was known for his philanthropy, and established the Lee Loy Seng Foundation to provide scholarships for Malaysian students to pursue tertiary education. He was also the benefactor of the Lucky Village Old Folks Home in Ipoh.

His 2 sons Lee Oi Hian and Lee Hau Hian are considered to be in the top 20 richest people in Malaysia. Lee Oi Hian and Lee Hau Hian have an estimated net worth of US$1.5bil in 2015.

Currently both Lee Oi Hian and Lee Hau Hian are controlling shareholders of KLK Bhd with a market capitalization of Rm 22,485 million and Batu Kawan with a market capitalization of Rm 8,515 million.

Agong awarded Tan Sri to Lee Oi Hian and Dato to Lee Hau Hian.

As I mentioned earlier, Tan Sri Lee Loy Seng was the president of Perak Chinese Maternity Hospital (a private non-profit hospital that gives free treatment to the poor) from 1978 to 1992. After he passed away, his 2nd son Dato Lee Hau Hian became the President and appointed me as one of the Directors. Since the hospital has expanded to treat all sicknesses, it is now called Perak Community Hospital.   

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Another fact that must be highlighted

KLK took Ijmplant private at Rm3.10 (was rm1.86)

Ijmplant is identical with Tsh resources which both own palm oil estates in Sabah, East Kalimantan and Sumatra





2023-04-01 17:59

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