A record bounty of HK$10 million is being offered to capture suspects who attacked an Ant Group investor nicknamed “Cash Cow”, a friend of Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba’s founder Jack Ma.
According to local reports, Chinese businessman Qian Fenglei and a friend surnamed Fang were leaving the “Dynasty Club” located at the Wan Chai district of Hong Kong around midnight on Nov. 14, when they were allegedly accosted by three or four people armed with knives.
Qian was stabbed in the thigh and Fang was stabbed in the head. Qian was able to escape into his chauffeured vehicle to return home before he alerted the authorities for help. Fang remained at the scene. The suspects fled and local police cordoned off the two areas for investigation.
By press time, the assailants are still at large. The incident has been classified by the Hong Kong police as an assault case and investigation is ongoing.
Qian Fenglei is a shareholder of Ant Group
This incident is notable because it comes on the heels of the aborted public listing of the giant fintech firm Ant Group, of which Qian is a prominent investor.
Qian, along with Yu Guoxiang and Shen Guojun are known as the “Ningbo Gang”, according to China’s Yangtze Evening News. They are known to be the key financial backers of Alibaba founder Jack Ma, another Ningbo native. Qian was pictured standing next to Ma when Alibaba went public on the NYSE.
Playfully nicknamed “Qian Duoduo” (Cash Cow) by his entertainer friend Li Yapeng, Qian became famous for his charity work. He donated huge sums of money after the 2008 disastrous earthquakes in Sichuan province, and donated RMB$10 million to his hometown of Ningbo after it suffered a major flood in 2013.
According to public records, the 44-year-old Qian did not inherit wealth. He grew up in poverty, helping his family eke out a living by digging snails out of the paddy fields.
Currently Qian owns 20 companies: nine are registered in Zhejiang, five in Beijing, and six more in other regions. Among them, the biggest one is Zhejiang Highfund International Holdings Co., Ltd. According to Highfund International’s official website, Qian is engaged in trade, construction, technology, internet, finance around the world.
Highfund International was given the rights by Hangzhou authorities in May 2017 to manage the financial district near West Lake.
As of October 12, 2019, Chinese business intelligence website tianyancha.com lists Qian as a 4.88% owner of Shanghai Jing Yi Investment Center, the Shanghai subsidiary of Ant Group.
HK $10 million bounty for suspects
In the evening of Nov. 15, Qian made the following post on Weibo: “Thank you Hong Kong Police Force! In order to support the Hong Kong Police to solve the case as soon as possible, we will publish a reward announcement in the Sing Tao Daily and other media tomorrow, so people can provide clues to help bring peace to the community!”
Attached to the post was a picture of the reward announcement, which showed a bounty of HK$10 million for information leading to the identification of the perpetrators. The reward sum is said to be the highest in the city’s history.
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