Joseph Lau Net Worth (Updated 2024)

What is Joseph Lau’s Net Worth?

Joseph Lau, a prominent Hong Kong real estate investor and businessman, has an estimated net worth of $7.2 billion. Lau’s wealth primarily stems from his involvement in the real estate industry, particularly through his former position as chairman of Chinese Estates Holdings, a major investment holding company based in Hong Kong. 

It’s worth noting that Lau’s net worth has fluctuated over time due to various factors, including market conditions and personal decisions. For instance, in 2017, citing serious health issues, Lau transferred 75% of his shares in Chinese Estates to his wife and son. 

Despite legal troubles, including a conviction for bribery and money laundering in Macau in 2014, Lau’s wealth has remained considerable. His net worth is not solely tied to his business ventures; he is also known for his extensive art and wine collections, which contribute significantly to his overall wealth. Forbes has estimated the total value of his art collection alone at around $1 billion.

Here’s the breakdown of Joseph Lau’s net worth:


Joseph Lau

Net Worth:

$7.2 Billion

Date of Birth:

19 July 1951



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Joseph Lau Net Worth

Early Life

Joseph Lau Luen-hung was born on July 21, 1951, in Hong Kong. He grew up in a family with a younger brother, Thomas, and two younger sisters. Details about his early childhood are not widely documented, but it is known that Lau pursued higher education in Canada, attending the University of Windsor.

This international education likely provided him with a broader perspective and the foundational knowledge that would later aid him in his business ventures.

After completing his studies, Lau returned to Hong Kong to join his family’s business, marking the beginning of his illustrious career in the real estate industry.


Joseph Lau’s career began in 1974 when he joined his family’s business, which initially focused on manufacturing electric fans. Demonstrating his entrepreneurial spirit, Lau renamed the company Evergo Industrial Enterprise in 1978 and took it public in Hong Kong by 1982. This move marked the start of his significant influence in the business world.

In 1985, Lau shifted the company’s focus to investment-holding and property-management services, a strategic decision that laid the groundwork for his future success in real estate.

Lau’s major breakthrough came in 1986 when he acquired a 43% stake in Chinese Estates Holdings, becoming the majority shareholder. Under his leadership, Chinese Estates expanded its real estate investments through a series of acquisitions, including a notable 67% stake in Chi Cheung Investment in 2000.

One of his most significant achievements was the development of The ONE, the tallest retail complex in Hong Kong, which opened in 2010. 

Despite his business successes, Lau’s career has not been without controversy. In 2014, he was convicted of bribery and money laundering in Macau, leading to his resignation from Chinese Estates. His son, Lau Ming-wai, succeeded him as chairman, while Sue Chan, the elder sister of Lau’s wife, became the chief executive.

Art and Wine Collections

Joseph Lau is renowned for his extensive and valuable art and wine collections, which significantly contribute to his overall net worth. His art collection is estimated to be worth around $1 billion and includes works by some of the most celebrated artists in history, such as Andy Warhol, Paul Gauguin, and David Hockney.

Lau’s passion for art began in 1978, and over the years, he has acquired numerous high-profile pieces, including Warhol’s “Mao” for $17.4 million and Gauguin’s “Te Poipoi” for $39.2 million. His collection also features Chinese imperial porcelain, which has fetched millions at auctions. For instance, in 2022, Sotheby’s auctioned eight pieces from his collection, expected to bring in up to $19 million.

In addition to his art collection, Lau is an avid wine collector. His wine collection includes rare and prestigious bottles, such as Château Lafite-Rothschild from various vintages. Lau has periodically sold parts of his wine collection at auctions, achieving significant returns.

In 2022, Christie’s auctioned wines from his collection, netting over $8 million. These collections not only reflect Lau’s personal interests but also serve as substantial financial assets, enhancing his overall wealth.

Personal Life

Joseph Lau was first married to Po Wing-kam in 1977, with whom he had two children, Lau Ming-wai and Jade Lau Sau-yung. The couple divorced in 1992. Lau Ming-wai, his eldest son, has followed in his father’s footsteps, becoming vice-chairman of Chinese Estates Group and holding various public service roles in Hong Kong.

Lau also has five additional children from relationships with two other women, Yvonne Lui and Kimbee Chan. In 2016, Lau married Kimbee Chan, with whom he has three children.

Lau made extravagant purchases for his family. Notably, he bought a 7.03-carat blue diamond for his daughter Josephine in 2009, and in 2015, he purchased two more expensive diamonds, renaming them “Sweet Josephine” and “Blue Moon of Josephine” after his daughter.

Despite his legal issues and health problems, including renal failure and a kidney transplant in 2016, Lau continues to maintain a high-profile lifestyle, living in one of Hong Kong’s most expensive houses and frequently making headlines for his personal and financial decisions.

Legal Issues

In 2014, Joseph Lau was convicted in absentia by a Macau court for bribery and money laundering related to a land deal. He was sentenced to five years and three months in prison but has avoided serving this sentence by remaining in Hong Kong, which does not have an extradition agreement with Macau.

This conviction has led to Lau being labeled a fugitive, and he has since faced various legal challenges, including a high-profile judicial review application against Hong Kong’s proposed extradition law in 2019.

Lau eventually withdrew this challenge, citing a desire to reduce societal disputes.

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