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Lithium King’s $3.5 Billion Fortune Now Facing Government Threat (1)

June 23, 2022, 10:29 PM

Few people are better positioned for the electric-vehicle revolution than the billionaire Julio Ponce Lerou.

He retired years ago, but the former son-in-law of late dictator Augusto Pinochet is still known in Chile as the lithium king. And Ponce has never been richer: The shareholder group he leads has seen its approximately 25% stake in SQM, the world’s No. 2 lithium miner, quintuple over the past seven years amid record profit, increasing the value of the portion he owns to $3.5 billion.

Like billionaires across the globe who have seen their wealth soar, from Elon Musk to Chinese property moguls, ...