Real estate platform Ke Holdings, also known as Beike, said on Thursday that its founder and chairman Zuo Hui has passed away due to unexpected complications stemming from illness.
“Zuo was a visionary leader since the company’s inception,” Beike said. He had a strong vision in building and launching the platform and developing the housing transaction and service industry, the company added.
Born in 1971, Zuo founded Lianjia, a property brokering agency in Beijing in 2001, when the housing market in the capital started to take off. He established Beike in 2018 to host brokers, including Lianjia. Beike raised USD 2.1 billion from its IPO on the New York Stock Exchange in August 2020 and now has a market cap of USD 59 billion. Its stock dropped more than 10% in pre-market trading following the news of Zuo’s death.
Beike’s board will make arrangements for corporate governance and related matters, and then make an announcement within two weeks, Beike said in a filing with the US Securities and Exchange Commission.