Li Ka-shing, Asia’s richest man, said he will devote himself to operating his charity foundation when he eventually retires, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reported Thursday.
The Li Ka Shing Foundation has donated HK$15 billion since it was founded in 1980.
About 89 percent of the funds support projects in Hong Kong and mainland China, said Li, 86.
Li’s flagship conglomerates, Cheung Kong (Holdings) Ltd. (00001.HK) and Hutchison Whampoa Ltd. (00013.HK), are undergoing an unprecedented reorganisation.
The restructuring, which market observers say paves the way for Li’s retirement, will take place in three major steps.
The first step, the delisting of Cheung Kong and the listing of its successor, CK Hutchison Holdings Ltd., registered in the Cayman Islands, received 99.758 percent support from shareholders Wednesday.
The second step will be the takeover of Hutchison Whampoa by CK Hutchison.
Market observers say some of Hutchison Whampoa’s minority shareholders may vote against the takeover, since they will receive only 0.684 of a CK Hutchison share for each Hutchison Whampoa share they hold.
The third step will be spinning off the property-related businesses of the merged entity into a new firm, Cheung Kong Property Holdings Ltd.
Li, speaking to shareholders attending court and the special meetings for the approval of the first step Wednesday, stressed that he was confident the restructuring will be completed.
Translation by Vey Wong
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