Yeung Yiu-chung (楊耀松) – King of Industrial Buildings and Agent of YKK zippers
York Lo: The authorized agent for YKK zippers in Hong Kong since the 1950s has been Hung Cheong Import & Export Ltd ( 鴻昌進出口有限公司, incorporated in 1972), which was founded by Kwok Tak-seng (郭得勝, 1911-1990) and Yeung Yiu-chung (楊耀松, 1921-2003).
The profits from selling YKK zippers formed the foundations of two multi-billion real estate fortunes as Kwok went on to start Sun Hung Kai Properties (which started out developing many industrial buildings before going into residential and commercial real estate) and Yeung became known as the king of industrial buildings through his Shun Cheong Trading Co Ltd (順昌有限公司, incorporated in 1955) which has developed at least eight industrial buildings, four of which are named after him. His family also owns many other commercial and industrial properties including the 23-story Winbase Centre (勝基中心, built in 1992) where both Shun Cheong and Hung Cheong operated out of, the 18-story Yeung Iu Chi Commercial Building at Jaffe Road (楊耀熾商業大廈, built in 1985) in memory of his brother and the 11-story Johnson Industrial Mansion (祥順工業大廈, built in 1971) in Kwun Tong and the 22-story Johnson Centre (祥順中心, built in 1996) in Tsim Sha Tsui in memory of his father.
Yeung Yiu-chung (left) presenting a $4000 check to Leo Lee (see article on Wah Mei Electric), then chairman of Tung Wah in 1970 for the construction of an elderly home (KSDN, 1970-5-8)
Native of Shunde, Yeung’s father Johnson Yeung (楊祥順) was the agent for Shiseido cosmetics in HK and had a buying office in Kobe which was sadly burned down taking the lives of many relatives who worked there. Johnson died during the war and after the War, his sons Iu-chi, Yiu-chung and Yiu-yuk (楊耀煜) established Gee Chang Co (志昌行, incorporated in 1947) to distribute adhesives and metals. The Yeung family later broke off from Hung Cheong and continued to distribute YKK and American zipper brand Talon through Gee Chang Zippers (incorporated in 1986 and dissolved in 2019). (Thanks to Louise Wong of Next magazine who reached out to Yeung’s son Alex for the additional info) Outside of real estate, zippers and adhesives, Yeung also operated a supermarket on Junction Road in Kowloon, the Chinese Restaurant & Nightclub at the Sheraton and Tai Fook Securities. He maintained a very low profile while he was alive except for serving as a director of the Tung Wah Group of Hospitals in the mid-1970s and a high profile ad he placed in 1994 challenging the Land Development Corporation over a land deal on Sharp Street East in Causeway Bay.
As SHKP grew, Kwok Tak-seng handed the management of Hung Cheong to his younger brother Kwok Tak-biu (郭得標) who ran it for 40 years before passing the baton to Tak-biu’s son Kwok Ping-yim (郭炳炎) in the late 1990s. In the early 2000s, Hung Cheong was doing around HK$200 million in annual sales and counted OEM garment manufacturers in HK for brands such as GAP, Tommy Hilfiger and Polo as clients. Tak-seng’s eldest son Walter Kwok continued to serve on the board of Hung Cheong.
This article was first posted on 6th October 2016.
- Next Magazine article about the lesser known branch of the Kwok family which runs Hung Cheong:
List of properties own by Shun Cheong Trading:
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