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China’s Richest Man
A pharmaceutical researcher who discovered a way to harvest blood thinner from pig’s intestines has become the richest man in China.

Li Li rose to the top slot of China’s rich list today as shares in his Shenzhen Hepalink Pharmaceutical Co were listed on China’s Nasdaq-style market for start-ups.

Looking overwhelmed by the extraordinary investor interest in his firm, Mr Li made a rare public appearance to strike the gong marking the start of trade yesterday morning in the southern boomtown of Shenzhen.
The price of the shares rose 27 per cent on their first day of trading in an issue underwritten by Goldman Sachs, swelling the wealth of Mr Li and his wife and business partner, Li Tan, to $7.8 billion (£5.2 billion).

Mr Li first worked for a state-owned meat processing plant in the provincial capital until 1992, leaving to become chief executive of a biotechnology firm.

After failed attempts to co-operate with state-owned firms, the couple set up Hepalink in 1998 to produce heparin using a procedure that Mr Li had been perfecting for 25 years.