Today, Adrian Cheng is considered the No. 1 personality in the collection of art objects. Heir to one of the richest families in Hong Kong, he likes to define himself as a “cultural entrepreneur”. The Chinese billionaire recently announced the launch of a new investment fund to target those he sees as the most important consumers of the century : Millennials and Generation Z in China.
Leader of the most influential personalities
He ranks 12th in ArtReview’s Power 100 ranking of the most influential people in the art world. For the year 2020, Adrian Cheng is considered the most powerful collector in the world, ahead of the American Pamela J. Joyner, 13th, and the Frenchman Vincent Worms, 28th. His aura continues to grow, since he has climbed 61 steps in this ranking in one year, where he entered in 2014. Adrian Chengbases his notoriety on his foundation, K11 Art Foundation, playing a capital role in the promotion of emerging Chinese art. K11 is basically a huge shopping center located in the heart of Hong Kong, founded by New World Development, a powerful conglomerate created by Adrian Cheng’s grandfather and specializing in real estate, logistics and transport. The young Chinese businessman, born in 1979 and a Harvard graduate, is now at the head of the family empire, which also includes Chow Tai Fook, a company specializing in jewelry and watches.
C Ventures, Adrian Cheng’s investment fund nanny
The Cheng family’s new investment structure is called C Ventures and has already taken stakes in a whole network of highly technologically advanced brands. Various profiles such as the trendy media Nowness, the specialized site that generates projects and jobs for young designers Not Just a Label or the luxury clothing rental company Armarium. The goal : to create an interconnected network of generally Western resources in order to precisely target what Adrian Cheng calls the BAT generation, for Baidu, Alibaba and Tencent, the three behemoths of Chinese e-commerce.
The BAT generation represents 65% of Chinese e-commerce customers and by 2020, it will represent 53% of all Chinese consumers. In addition, the one-child policy pursued by the Communist Party created a sociological group with tastes radically opposed to those of their parents and those of Westerners of the same age.
Adrian Cheng teams up with Clive Ng
After carefully studying their behavior, C Ventures began buying companies that could meet their specific needs. The fact that BATers watch 765 minutes of video each week convinced C Ventures to acquire shares in Dazed Media and buy Nowness, a fashion video channel financed by LVMH. In deficit, Nowness would have cost the group less than 10 million dollars (8.4 million euros). For these various investments, Adrian Cheng has teamed up with Clive Ng, a businessman and financier in the media world.