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SM's Henry Sy Sr. dies at 94

The Philippines' richest man Henry Sy Sr., founder of SM Group, has passed away on Saturday morning. He was 94.

This was confirmed by sources close to the Sy family and by officials of BDO and SM.

“Henry Sy Sr passed away peacefully in his sleep early Saturday morning. There are no further details at the moment," the SM Group said in a statement sent to GMA News Online.

"We are truly grateful for the outpouring of sympathy on the passing of our father, Henry Sy Sr. May we respectfully ask for privacy today to give the family time to reflect and to finalize arrangements," the Sy family said in a separate statement.

A retail, property, and banking magnate, Sy topped Forbes Magazine's Philippines' Richest list for 11 consecutive years.

With a net worth of $20 billion, the chairman emeritus of conglomerate SM Investments Corp. is ranked 52nd richest in the world.

He was also chairman emeritus of SM Prime Holdings Inc., SM Development Corp., and Highlands Prime Inc., BDO Unibank Inc., and honorary chairman of China Banking Corp. 

Sy opened the first ShoeMart store in 1958 which has since evolved into a dynamic group of companies with three lines of businesses – retail, banking, and property, according to SMIC.

The business leader is survived by his wife, Felicidad Tan, and six children, Teresita Sy-Coson, Hans Sy, Harley Sy, Elizabeth Sy, Herbert Sy, and Henry Sy Jr.

Teresita, the eldest, serves as the vice chairman of SM Investments Corp. and the chairperson of BDO.

Henry Jr. is the co-vice Chairman of SM Investments Corp. and chairman of SM Prime Holdings Inc. and Highlands Prime, Inc. He is also the chairman and CEO of SM Development Corp.

Hans, Harley, Elizabeth, and Herbert hold various directorial and executive positions within the SM Group. —KG, GMA News