STEPHEN Riady is the high-flying son of Mochtar Riady, an Indonesian Chinese tycoon. Mr Mochtar Riady built his empire, which now sprawls across Asia and into the United States, from humble beginnings in a bicycle shop in Java and became one of one of Indonesia's most well-known bankers. Mr Stephen Riady started taking power in his father's empire at an early age, following a degree at the University of Southern California, and was the director of a bank as early as 1985, when he was just 26 years old. Now in his early 30s, Mr Riady is chairman of Lippo Group, the group's main listed vehicle in Hong Kong, with a market value of about $12 billion, while his father is semi-retired in the post of honorary chairman. The group's distinctive logo, similar to the mathematical symbol for infinity, stands proudly at the top of the twin blocks that make up the Lippo Building in Admiralty. The group also has a substantial stake in Hongkong Chinese Bank and controls Hongkong China Ltd, a property investment vehicle on the stock exchange, and stockbroker Lippo Asia. LEE Ming Tee remains one of the most intriguing characters in Hong Kong business, in spite of retiring from the boards of all the listed firms in his Allied Group empire seven months ago. The resignations followed a high-profile report by a government inspector on his company's dealings. Malaysian-born Mr Lee created an empire worth more than $5 billion, in spite of arriving in Hong Kong as recently as 1986, winning praise for his deal-making ability in sectors ranging from eel-farming to security guards. But it was in the property business that the ever-smiling Mr Lee excelled, partly in association with the Kajima Corp of Japan, being responsible for the Tregunter Tower blocks which loom over Central and which are among the tallest residential buildings in the world. As mainland investors became increasingly important in 1991 and 1992, Mr Lee cultivated influential contacts, which he is still using. He sold some of his listed companies with immaculate timing during the boom in ''shell companies'' in mid-1993.CHAN Chun-on was an executive director of Allied Group and Allied Overseas Investment. He was a ''Mr Fixit'' for Lee Ming Tee, who trusted him completely. He was a share dealer and a consummate engineer of corporate transactions. Ronald Tse Chu-fai, Allied Group's chief financial officer, said: ''Mr Chan was a very sharp person.'' He had the same home province, Fujian, as Mr Lee and spoke the same dialect. Mr Tse said Mr Chan was extremely adept at figures and in structuring transactions, especially corporate transactions. ''He has a very good memory [and knows] where the assets are and where the liabilities [are] and who the liabilities are due to.'' Mr Lee said: ''I believe it was [Mr] Chan's practice to deal on his own behalf as well as on behalf of the company. ''Nicholas Allen's report has shown that sometimes the line between the two was difficult to see.'' Securities and Futures Commission investigator Stuart Crosby, quoting the Allen report into the corporate affairs of the Allied Group, said: ''Mr Chan left for Taiwan on August 13, 1992, the day after [Mr Allen's] inspection was announced, and I can only conclude that he has gone into hiding.''