PETALING JAYA: IOI Group executive chairman Tan Sri Lee Shin Cheng has died.
He was 79.
A family member said that details of the funeral arrangements would be made known today.
According to the IOI Group website, he was scheduled to officially retire as executive chairman tomorrow.
Lee, the IOI Corp founder, came from a poor family.
He worked his way up and eventually founded one of the biggest oil palm plantation companies in Malaysia.
The tycoon was placed fifth on the 2019 Forbes Malaysia Rich List with an estimated net worth of US$5.4bil (RM22.68bil).
In 2015, he was conferred the Palm Oil Industry Leadership Award (Pila) by the Malaysian Palm Oil Council.
In March, Lee’s youngest son, IOI Properties Group chief executive officer Lee Yeow Seng, 40, married Energy, Science, Technology, Environment and Climate Change Minister Yeo Bee Yin, 35.
In an interview in conjunction with the 100th anniversary of the Malaysian palm oil industry in 2017, Lee told The Star he was involved in the oil palm plantation industry for 56 years.
He said the palm oil sector was one of the few areas that Malaysia could truly claim to be a global leader.
“Oil palm is something very close to my heart and also my first love because I feel that it is something very sustainable and versatile, as well as very useful to mankind.
“It can be used for so many purposes; both edible and non-edible. More importantly, this industry has helped planters to become entrepreneurs and thousands of smallholders have become middle-class earners,” he said.