Matchmaking for millionaires but gold-diggers need not apply

Mon, Aug 27, 2012, 01:00

MONEY CAN’T buy you love, but it helps. Organisers in China are holding screening events around China ahead of a matchmaking party for 32 rich men, each worth at least 100 million yuan (€12.6 million). So far, 2,700 hopeful young women have signed up just for the interviews.

Matchmaking is big business in China and finding partners for billionaires is a lucrative game. Forced to focus on building their pile of wealth during their early careers, many tycoons don’t have the time to follow the advice of their parents on whom to marry.

The Guangzhou-based China Entrepreneurs’ Club for Singles, a high-end matchmaking company targeting rich men, charges 200,000 yuan (€25,000) a year membership fee.

Candidates must be single, aged over 30 and have personal assets worth more than €12.6 million or be the chief executive of a big company.

The men range in age from 31 to 55.

“They want women to have good looks, figures, manners and characters. And most important, they have to be serious about getting married. These guys are looking for good wives, not just pretty faces,” Wendy Dai, a senior consultant at the club, told the Shanghai Daily.

The women must be tian su chun – sweet, simple and innocent. This is characterised by a lovely smile, “minimal materialistic demands” (no gold-diggers, please) and “minimal previous relationships” (a virgin, preferably).

Thirty-two-year-old investment tycoon Frank Chen, who is using a pseudonym, is looking for Ms Right. “I already have beautiful girls around me and I like them, but I won’t marry them. I’m looking for a good woman, good wife and good mother to my children,” he said.

The candidates specify height, weight and measurements, education, previous relationships, parents’ background and employment, and – very important – whether there are poor relations who might come looking for money after the match is made.

The testing is rigorous. The women’s faces are read by feng shui experts to make sure they do not have bad-luck characteristics – a woman with high cheekbones, for example, is considered inauspicious. They were examined by plastic surgeons to see if they were “real” beauties, went through psychological testing to see if they were serious and how they felt about money. There were tests to see how “smart and mature” they were.

Although the Chinese economy continues to slow, the ranks of the ultra-rich continue to swell.

One out of every 1,300 people in China has an annual income of one million yuan (€126,000) or more, according to the latest edition of the Hurun report on wealth in China, while those with more than 10 million yuan (€1.26 million) broke through the one million mark for the first time, up 6.3 per cent on 2011.