Sydney developer Lang Walker died last night, aged 78.
The philanthropist, with a net worth of c$4 billion according to Forbes, making him the world’s 1312th richest person and 18th wealthiest in Australia, was surrounded by his wife, Sue, and three children, Blake, Chad and Georgia at his Woolloomooloo home, after reportedly suffering deteriorating health and stints in hospital for months.
The business he created with his father Alec five decades ago, Walker Corporation, holds a c$9b national portfolio with some 50 tenant clients, amongst them, the federal and state governments.
It also has a development pipeline worth c$36b.
In Fiji, Mr Walker reportedly recently spent over $100m developing the luxury Kokomo Island resort, with 21 villas, the priciest charging some c$18,000 a night.
“Lang made the strategically defining decision some time ago to hold a substantial property portfolio encompassing…prime assets in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide,” a company statement said today.
“This portfolio will continue to be managed, curated and added to by the executive team for the long term,” it added.
Mr Walker was awarded an Order of Australia for his philanthropic efforts nine years ago.
He was inducted into the Property Council of Australia Hall of Fame in 2017.
“Lang has been recognised and regarded as a great visionary, an inspirational leader and the first to creatively tackle the challenge of urban transformation,” the company’s managing director and chief executive officer, David Gallant, said.
“Together with his team, he has delivered exceptional placemaking concepts that can be seen in iconic developments such as Broadway Shopping Centre, Rhodes Peninsula, Woolloomooloo Wharf, King Street Wharf, Collins Square and Parramatta Squares are,” he added (story continues below).
“Extensive provisions and arrangements are now firmly in place to clearly define and govern the group’s future,” according to the executive.
“Lang’s vision will remain an enduring force through the Walker DNA and the Walker Way which he actively passed on – it is embedded in our culture and our modus operandi.
“The vital importance of business continuity and the need to maintain key relationships to retain our pre-eminent position has been instilled in all of us”.
A great son of Sydney: PCA
PCA CEO Mike Zorbas described Lang Walker as “a great son of Sydney”.
“He was a great champion of the property industry and a great contributor to many Australian cities and communities,” he added.
“Lang lived and breathed property for more than five decades…during [which] time he housed and employed tens of thousands of Australians while investing in and shaping our cities for the better,” according to the executive.
“His induction into the…Hall of Fame recognised his pioneering works in the property sector and the generosity of his broader philanthropic contributions”.
Mr Walker leaves 10 grandchildren.
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