In the US TV show The Bachelor, 25 women seek to win the heart of a single male. Each episode ends with a ceremony in which the bachelor gives a rose to each of the girls he wants to ‘get to know better’. The lady not to receive a flower is ushered at a less-than-decorous speed to a waiting limo By the end of the series the bachelor (theoretically) finds his true love.
The reality show may sound a bit twee to WiC’s more cerebral readers, but you can’t argue with success: it has just completed its sixteenth season.
Naturally, China has its own version of the series. But rather than being a reality show, it’s genuinely real. On a different format and vastly bigger scale, its male suitors boast bank accounts stretching to nine digits. According to the Yangcheng Evening News, the Chinese Entrepreneur Singles’ Club has just kicked off its billionaires courtship competition. The organisation is representing 11 rich men who are paying for help in finding the right spouse.
Nor are there any shortage of candidates. Around 2,800 women applied for the competition, with 320 making the cut for a series of interviews in Guangzhou’s Garden Hotel. The criteria for applicants? Single (obviously), aged 18-28, 160-175cm in height, with college degree and an “outstanding look and temperament”.
The Yangcheng Evening News reports that 28 women will be selected from the interviews and join the entrepreneurs for a two day private party in a luxury hotel in June. Its journalist even managed to meet some of the entrepreneurs in question, although on strict condition of anonymity. One is a well known real estate developer, another owns hotels, while another sports his own clothing brand. Most are renminbi billionaires. “It is much more important to find a suitable wife for entrepreneurs than for ordinary people,” the event’s organiser told the newspaper. “We are committed to solving real marriage problems for entrepreneurs, to select professionally a good wife for them, who will also be a high-quality mother.”
The organiser explains that entrepreneurs are usually too busy to attend to their children, which often means that their offspring are showy with their wealth and behave rebelliously. Hence the need for a top-notch mother to keep the billionaire brats in line.
All the women had to go through five interviews with specialists: an image consultant, a psychologist, a physiognomist (who judges character through facial features), a professor (to determine cultural knowledge) and a relationship consultant.
If it all seems a little clinical, it is. But for those Chinese billionaires with more money than time, it seems to be a service they’ll pay for. Another divorced billionaire (not yet 50, enjoys golf) has offered the same organisation Rmb5 million if they can find him a wife that meets his own requirements. She must be a beautiful graduate from a simple family background, who is younger than 26. Oh yes, and she needs to be a virgin.
“I’m gonna puke,” was one of the more considered responses from the weibo fraternity.
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