Zhang Lei is the CEO and founder of Hillhouse Capital Management. Zhang graduated from Yale University with an MBA and an MA in international relations. Zhang is vice chairman of the board of trustees at Beijing's Renmin University, where he received his bachelor's degree. Zhang has a net worth of $3 billion as of September 26, according to Forbes. He had a modest start, founding his company in 2005 with a $20 million grant from Yale University, his alma school. Zhang purposefully stays out of the spotlight despite the fact that Hillhouse Capital currently oversees assets worth more than $63 billion. In addition to investing money, Hillhouse also contributes resources and industry knowledge to produce solid returns on investments over the long run. The fund searches for businesses that are finding innovative and long-lasting solutions to difficult problems when investing in growth possibilities. Hillhouse is the largest private equity company doing business in Asia. It has offices in Beijing, Shanghai, Hong Kong, and Singapore. In addition, Hillhouse has offices abroad in London and New York. Over 350 investment professionals from top universities around the world work for the private equity firm.
In June of 2022, after the Hillhouse portfolio was hit by plunging tech stocks, there were rumors about widespread layoffs by the fund. However, the fund categorically denied the rumors. According to South China Morning Post, Hillhouse Capital has denied that it is engaging in a large-scale layoffs. The company, which made early investments in Tencent, Meituan, and JD.com, is one of the largest investors in China's technology sector. According to the fund itself, it focuses on media, consumer, industrial and commodity-related sectors. Some of Hillhouse Capital's investment decisions would classify it as a contrarian, though it maintains its fair share of mainstream bets as well.