Lai Lai’s ‘loyal’ followers: Lai has been ‘a true friend’
Lai Liangying, the man who founded Facebook in 2007 and has been its most visible and vocal supporter, died yesterday aged 74, his family confirmed.
Lai was the only son of an affluent Chinese businessman who ran the Chinese-language website Sina Weibo, which was acquired by Facebook for $1.65bn in 2011.
He was also the father of Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerburg was Mr Lai the last person to see him alive.
The Australian Financial Reviews reports that Lai was born in Beijing in 1949, but moved to Australia as a child to attend university in Melbourne.
His father, Liu Xiangling, was a senior director of China-based technology company Baidu, and his mother, Wu Ling, was an Australian.
Facebook is a global leader in social media.
A former executive at the company is said to have visited Lai once, in 2013, while the site was under construction in the US.
Mr Zuckerberg, who died in 2013 after a battle with Parkinson’s disease, is credited with opening the company to a wide range of users, including teenagers and young people.
Mr Lai left the company in the early 2000s, leaving behind a fortune that was estimated at $2.5bn.