July 03, 2018
Lee Kum Kee Group Chairman Mr. Lee Man Tat Awarded the Silver Bauhinia Star by the Government of Hong Kong Special Administrative Region
Lee Kum Kee Group Chairman Mr. Lee Man Tat
In the 2018 Honours List announced by The Government of the Hong Kong Special Administrative Region (HKSAR) on 1 July 2018, Lee Kum Kee Group Chairman Mr. Lee Man Tat, who is close to 90 years of age, was granted the Silver Bauhinia Star (SBS) in recognition of his long-term distinguished contributions to charity and community service. In the citation of Mr. Lee’s award, the Government also commended him for leading Lee Kum Kee to become one of the most prominent manufacturers of Chinese sauces and condiments in Hong Kong and for promoting Chinese culture and cuisines over the years.
Mr. Lee Man Tat is grateful to the Government for giving him recognition again after the award of the Bronze Bauhinia Star (BBS) in 2010. Mr. Lee expressed, “It is most encouraging to receive the Silver Bauhinia Star as Lee Kum Kee celebrates its 130th Anniversary this year. I see this award not just as an honour for myself, but also an endorsement of the development of Lee Kum Kee and our contributions to the community over the years. I heartily thank all Lee Kum Kee staff for their salutary dedication and contribution, and am indebted to my family members for their care and backing, and our customers and business partners for their trust and support.”
In 1888, Mr. Lee Man Tat’s grandfather invented oyster sauce and founded Lee Kum Kee. When Mr. Lee took over management in the early 1970’s, the business was operating as a primitive family production shop with a single product for sale. Under his stewardship, he successfully turned the small family business into a multinational corporation with two business arms, comprising the Sauce Group and the Health Products Group with over 10,000 staff globally and over 200 types of sauces and condiments marketed to over 100 countries and regions. Through expanding the scope of the sauce business, Mr. Lee also set “Promoting Chinese Cuisines Worldwide” as the company mission, and spares no effort in bringing the best of Chinese culinary culture to every corner of the world for all to enjoy.
Mr. Lee Man Tat is a strong advocate of the Confucian business doctrines, setting “Considering Others’ Interests” as motto in conducting himself and his business, and adopting “Benefitting the Community” and “Sharing Fruits of Success” as the core values of the family and its business. He has established various charity foundations to fund different activities to relieve poverty, support educational institutions in the Mainland and Hong Kong and provide scholarships to support under-privileged students. In addition, his foundations sponsor and work with various social welfare organisations to hold community activities to promote and strengthen caring family relationship in Hong Kong.
Mr. Lee adopts a low profile, but his experience of achieving business success is impactful and inspirational as an icon of the perseverance, courageous and entrepreneurial spirit of Hong Kong. His adherence to the concept of “Considering Others’ Interests”, in action as much as in words, reflected in his care for educational causes and the under-privileged, is indeed honourable and sets a fine model for younger generations to follow.