About the Founder- Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong


Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong

Brief history about the Founder

Genting company Berhad was founded by the Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong (28 February 1918 – 23 October 2007) in year 1965 was a prominent wealthy Malaysian Chinese businessman. He was renowned for his vision and courage in transforming Genting Highlands from an unexplored hilltop into one of the world’s most successful casino resorts. He was once the richest man in Malaysia with a net worth of US$4.2billion[1]. He was renowned for his vision in transforming Genting Highlands from an unexplored hilltop into one of the world’s most successful casino resorts . The history of Tan Sri Lim Goh Tong . Not only that , Lim goh tong was born into unhealthy environment in a village. In that time ,China was in a period of turmoil after 1911 revolution . but he grew up peacefully and had the opportunity of studying in school . Lim was forced to leave school and he and his elder brother had to take over the heavy burden of feeding his family . After that ,Lim decided to go Malaysia in order to take the plunge in venturing. He is following his cousin ,Lim Kheng Ching ‘s footstep . He worked for his uncle and learning the Malay language in meantime .After gaining experience he went on to become a building sub-contractor and completed his first job of building a two-storey school. Born in 1918 in Anxi, a mountainous county in southeastern Fujian province, China, Lim Goh Tong was the fifth child in his family.. He has an elder brother (Jing Ya), three elder sisters (Lim Zhuang, Lim Bau and Lim See), a younger sister (Lim Mei) and a younger brother (Jing Kun). Lim was born into a rustic environment in a village, during that time, China was in a period of turmoil and unrest after the 1911 revolution, but life was relatively sheltered for Lim in the village. He grew up peacefully and had the opportunity of studying in school. However, disaster struck and his father died when he was 16. Lim was forced to leave school and he and his elder brother had to take over the heavy burden of feeding his family.[2]As China’s situation was becoming worse, Lim Goh Tong decided to take the plunge in venturing out to Malaysia (known as Malaya at that time) following his cousin, Lim Kheng Chong’s footstep. He left China through Xiamen in early February 1937 at the age of 19. He worked for his uncle as a carpenter in the first two years, learning the Malay language in the meantime. After gaining experience he went on to become a building sub-contractor and completed his first job of building a two-storey school. He returned to Anxi in 1940, but went back to Malaya the next year amidst a deteriorating war environment.[2]

History of the Founder’s career 

The Japanese invaded Malaya in 1942 and caused Lim to have a few near-death experiences. During the early Japanese Occupation, he earned a living as a vegetable farmer, but decided to switch to petty trading for a better living. Later on Lim ventured into scrap-metal and hardware trading. When the Japanese Occupation ended, there was an urgent demand for heavy machinery for resumed operations in mines and rubber plantations. Lim seized the opportunity and engaged in second-hand machinery trading, making his first fortune.[3] From used machinery trading, Lim strayed into iron mining, joining as a partner in an iron mining company which couldn’t settle the outstanding payment of two bulldozers with him. This proved to be a successful venture, and he later went on to form a joint-venture company which was one of the first Chinese tin companies to utilise dredges.[4] While dealing in heavy machinery, Lim accumulated a wide range of reconditioned machines as well as a substantial amount of cash to move into construction and related industries. In the name of his family construction company, Kien Huat Private Limited, Lim began taking on several contracting jobs with help and guidance from his uncles. Kien Huat won accolades and became recognised as one of the leading construction companies, building the Ayer Itam Dam[5] and the Kemubu Irrigation Scheme.[6]

History about the Founder and Genting Group

Genting Group’s involvement in the property sector can be traced from the initial primary objective of holding land-based assets for long term appreciation and development potential to the current strategic move to develop and market the Group’s landed properties mainly held in the plantation subsidiary, by Asiatic Land Development Sdn Bhd, a wholly owned subsidiary of Asiatic Development Berhad – which is 54.8% owned by Genting Berhad.

The Genting Highlands Theme Park

The idea of building a hilltop resort was first conceived when Lim Goh Tong was having a dinner in the Cameron Highlands. As he was enjoying the soothing cool breeze of the Cameron Highlands, an idea struck him that as the standard of living rose steadily in Malaysia, more and more people would visit mountain resorts for relaxation and recreation, but Cameron Highlands was too far away from the capital city Kuala Lumpur, therefore building a mountain resort nearer to Kuala Lumpur would have great business potential.[7]

After doing some research, Lim found Gunung (mountain in Malay) Ulu Kali at a place called Genting Sempah to be an ideal location for his plan. He formed an expedition and explored the place, collecting a wealth of data on the topography, drainage, soil conditions and other relevant aspects of the region, this proved to be very useful in drawing up plans for developing the resort.[7]

Upon conceiving this idea, many naysayers were sceptical of Lim turning a wilderness into a tourist resort. Most thought it was really risky and reckoned Lim who was financially comfortable to be foolish to invest heavily in money and time to develop Genting, but Lim brushed off all these negativities and went ahead firmly with his plan.[7]

After getting approvals from the Federal and State governments, Lim began the project in the face of a colossal task. Among the problems were building the access road towards the hilltop, water and electricity supplies, sewerage system and fire safety. Lim managed to build the access road towards the summit in three years when it was estimated to take fifteen years. Several sources of water in the mountain were identified, water supply was secured by building water-collection stations and water filtration plants with treated water stored in reservoirs. Electricity is supplied through a central electricity generation system with 12 big generators.[7][8]

During the construction, Lim survived six close brushes with death. Meanwhile, Lim had to administer another major project in Kelantan, the Kemubu Irrigation Scheme at the same time. This stretched his physical endurance to the limits as he had to shuttle between Kuala Lumpur and Kelantan and he worked seven days a week.[7]

During the Genting project, Lim spent all he had without earning any income. He sold an 810-hectare rubber estate to raise RM2.5 million. In addition, he invested all the money he had made from iron mining, sub-contracting and hardware businesses. The project was a heavy drain on Lim’s finances. When asked to invest in this project, Lim’s friends turned him down and counselled him to drop the entire scheme instead.[7]

Genting was granted the only casino licence after Tunku Abdul Rahman, then prime minister of Malaysia, visited Genting Highlands and commended Lim’s effort to develop a resort contributing to Malaysia’s tourism industry without government help.[7]

Lim managed to obtain a pioneer status for Genting Highlands and tax incentives despite its resort development not qualifying for it. He did so by convincing the government that tax incentives in the early stage of development of Genting Highlands were not only vital for them but also profitable to the government later on.[7]

The whole Genting project was completed in January 1971, but prior to officially commencing business, Kuala Lumpur and its surrounding areas were hit by the worst rainstorms in a century, the road to Genting was closed by landslides at 180 locations, the damaged sections took four months to repair. Genting opened its door for business on 8 May 1971.[7]

In the next 30 years, Lim continued to develop and expand Genting Highlands beyond its original idea of a hotel with basic tourist facilities. Among the projects were the construction of more hotels, indoor and outdoor theme parks, and a convention centre. A new road was built to shorten the journey to Genting from the northern states, and RM920 million was invested to widen a 10 km stretch of the access road to reduce congestion. Another RM928 million was spent on constructing a cable car system to provide visitors with an alternative mode of transportation.[8]

In 1993, at the suggestion of Tun Mahathir, the prime minister of Malaysia then, a township was developed on an 81-hectare piece of land around the site of the Genting Skyway cable car station. It was named Gohtong Jaya after Lim as a token of remembrance for his efforts in the development of Genting Highlands.[8][9]

As of now, Genting Highlands is one of the most successful Casino resorts in the world and is one of the primary tourist attractions in Malaysia. Lim’s company, Genting Groupoperates Genting Highlands and has diversified into many other industries such as plantations, property, paper, power generation, oil and gas exploration and cruise boat industries. In the process new company brands were created that have become distinctive names in their respective fields, namely Asiatic, Genting Sanyen (paper manufacturing) and Star Cruises.[10]

On 31 December 2003, Lim handed his chairmanship of Genting Group over to his son, Tan Sri Lim Kok Thay.[11]

Contributions and Daily Activities of the Founder
a) Investor Relation
Genting Malaysia Berhad (“Genting Malaysia”) is currently listed on the Main Market of
the Bursa Malaysia Securities Berhad (Bloomberg: GENM MK; Reuters: GENM KL; Bursa
Malaysia: GENM 4715). Genting Malaysia is one of the largest listed companies in Malaysia
with a market capitalisation of about RM23 billion (US$7 billion) as at 31 December 2011.

The authorised share capital of Genting Malaysia was RM800 million (comprising 8,000

million shares of RM0.10 each) and the issued and paid-up share capital of Genting Malaysiawas RM592.4 million (comprising 5,924 million ordinary shares) as at 31 December 2011.Genting Malaysia is a member company of the Genting Group, one of Asia’s leading and best managed multinationals. The Genting Group is the collective name for Genting Berhad and its subsidiaries and associates.
b)Sustainable Development
Sustainable Development means going beyond mere acts of charity or surface-level
Corporate Social Responsibility events. It is an intrinsic and invaluable element that has
been very much embedded into values and business strategies and forms a core essential of Genting corporate DNA. As a global leader in the leisure and hospitality industry, sustainable development is imperative and defines how to operate as a multinational global corporation. Operations in Malaysia, the United Kingdom or the United States of America, at the heart of sustainability strategy is the goal of achieving sustainability in achievements from providing responsible world-class entertainment, products and services, to the well-being of the employees, environmental awareness and conservation and the development of the communities that is served. In order to remain financially viable and operationally sustainable, Genting Berhad, have centred sustainable development policies on four basic pillarsEnvironment,Marketplace, Workplace and Community. This framework structures are commitment to conduct the business operations in asustainable and responsible manner while fulfilling the core responsibilities towards all stakeholders and creating a balance between Economic Sustainability, Environmental Sustainability and Community Sustainability.
Corporate Social Responsibility.In line with the Group’s core corporate values and principles, Genting Singapore remains committed to contributing to community activities that aim to improve lives and to protect the environment in which we live. Throughout 2009, the Group participated in a number of initiatives related to environmental
sustainability, charitable causes and good employment practices, investing the necessary time and resources to these endeavours.


c) Care for Environment

Environment care is one of Genting Group’s key sustainability interests. They attempt to
achieve a sustainable balance between development and conservation. The project
developments and operations are carefully planned and designed to minimise and protect the impact on the ecosystem. Various eco-friendly initiatives have been implemented by the teams to focus on the environmental issues and challenges. They advocate and encourage the 3R (Reduce, Reuse and Recycle) strategy among the employees. For example, Genting Malaysia’s team at Resorts World Genting has an Environmental,
Health & Safety (“EHS”) Committee dedicated to ensure that its teams comply with all
applicable environmental legislations (ISO 14001), other requirements and take proactive
steps to reduce environmental pollution and conserve energy, water consumption and waste generation.

d) Energy Efficiency:

Several protection and efficiency improvement processes were implemented. These included replacing conventional lights with longer-life and energy saving lights, replacement of metal halide spotlights with induction lamps and replacement of reciprocating compressors for aging chillers with scroll / screw compressors.
All pump house diesel engines at Resorts World Genting have been replaced with electrical

motors, reducing diesel consumption to approximately 2.4 million litres per year. Its Waste Management procedures ensure that wastes are properly identified, segregated, handled, transported and disposed of in line with the environmental policy, legal and other requirements. Waste management processes are regularly audited by the EHS Committee toensure compliance with set standards.Genting Malaysia has embarked on a year-long ‘green’ initiative by planting about 3,000 trees in and around Resorts World Genting in Genting Highlands. A Birds & Flora Photography Competition was held at the resort in March and April 2011 to create awarenessand promote the beauty of the natural surrounds of Resorts World Genting. Situated on a hilltop at 2,000 metres above sea level, Resorts World Genting is the onlyintegrated resort surrounded by a rare 130 million-year-old rainforest. To date, only 4% of itstotal land bank is developed. The rest remains unspoiled virgin rainforest and is home to 30% of the 745 bird species in Malaysia, some of the oldest trees and plants, exotic insects and rare flora and fauna. The winning photographs were published in Resorts World Genting’s coffee table book entitled ‘Nature’s Footprint’ which was launched by the Minister of Natural Resources and 

Environment, Dato’ Sri Douglas Uggah Embas.

Genting UK has held the Carbon Trust Standard throughout 2010 and 2011 and continues
to maintain a strong focus on its environmental responsibilities. Genting UK has benefited
from the cost savings derived from the energy conservation initiatives that it had introduced and is committed to retaining the Carbon Trust Standard in 2012.
Genting Singapore advocates environmental programmes that focused on research,
education and conservation. The Marine Life Park at Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore
targeted the marine education, conservation and research. The team from Resorts World
Sentosa participated in the Philippine-based veterinary training workshop, specialising in
treatment techniques for stranded marine mammals. The team contributed a portable inflation pool to the Philippine Marine Mammal Stranding Network which works directly with theBureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources on marine mammal rescue and rehabilitation.
Meanwhile, Genting Plantations has also supported on Sustainable Palm Oil since its
establishment in 2004 to promote the growth and use of sustainable palm oil. Its plantations team is also working to adopt the standards under the recently established Indonesian Sustainable Palm Oil Scheme. The plantation team adopts management strategies to ensure that agricultural practices and operations do not adversely affect the environment and biodiversity within and surrounding the estates. Regular security patrols and signboards prohibiting illegal hunting, stealing and chopping of trees were installed at high conservation value areas and estate entrances to prevent violation by outsiders.

Volunteerism among Employees
Genting Group encourages volunteerism among employees. The “We Care” teams in
Resorts World Genting and the Awana resorts, the “aRWSome Volunteers Corp” in
Resorts World Sentosa and many other employees have actively volunteered despite their
work schedule to support the community initiatives by our Group.
The team have voluntarily organized:
Gotong- Royong
Repair building of charity Homes
Delivering Food Supplies
Providing free tuition to children
Cooking for underprivileged
Motivational talks for children
Clean the beachfront and Cemetery.
Deliver school bags, shoes and bicycle to school children.
Group Centralised Procurement (GCP)
GCP provides procurement services for the following companies within the Genting Group:
Genting Berhad
Genting Malaysia Berhad and its Group of Companies
eGenting and its Group of Companies
GCP is a unit of Genting Malaysia Berhad and is implementing eSourcing as part of its
procurement services to the Group.
Requests for Quotation/Proposal/Information will be conducted online. Only online
registered suppliers will be invited to undergo the selection process.
Upon registration, the applied supplier’s business information will be made available to GCP
and its buyers to understand the nature and scope of the goods/services you can offer. Such
information will be used to evaluate the suitability of the company and the supplier will be
contacted when a sourcing opportunity arises that matches the company’s capabilities

Achievement and Awards

Lim had won many awards together with his company Genting Group for his entrepreneurship and his contribution, among them were:

Malaysian Entrepreneurs Award 1985

Manager of the Year Award 1986

Business Achiever of the Year Award 1994

Number 1 ranking of 10 Malaysian Leading Companies 1996

The Best Employer Award 1996

He was conferred the title “Tan Sri” by the government of Malaysia on 6 June 1979 in recognition to the contribution he has made to the country.

In 1978 Lim set up Yayasan Lim, a family foundation that donates regularly to educational and medical institutions, old folk’s homes, various organizations for the physically handicapped and other charitable causes.

2008 G2E Asia Visionary Award
Death of Founder

Lim Goh Tong died on 23 October 2007, at Subang Jaya Medical Centre (SJMC) in Subang Jaya. He is survived by his wife Puan Sri Lee Kim Hua, and their six children and 19 grandchildren.[16] His body was buried at Gohtong Memorial Park at Gohtong Jaya on Monday 29 October 2007.

  • The Black Eyed Peas who were performing on the night of 26 October in Genting Arena of Stars paid tribute to Lim Goh Tong during their concert. “A man died recently who was responsible for the place where we are today. I’d like to ask for a moment of silence to honour his life and legacy,” will.i.am said in his tribute.

More than 20,000 people, including royalty, Asia’s rich and famous, politicians, friends, business allies and members of the public paid tribute to Goh Tong in their own ways. They either attended the wake, sent wreaths or penned messages of sympathy.

Among those who paid their respect to Lim were

More than 1000 wreaths received from all over the world are being displayed 300m along the entrance of Gohtong Villa. Among the many Corporate entities sent wreaths and condolences included Las Vegas Caesars Palace, Sociedade de Turismo e Diversões de Macau, Stanley Ho, and the Government of Fujian province where Lim was born. Asia’s second richest man, Li Ka Shing (He is now first), sent a personal condolence note to the bereaved family, offering words that perhaps best captured the essence of who Goh Tong was.


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