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“I believe this is the first time [there has been such a scheme] only tailored for wealthy women,” Mr Du told The Daily Telegraph this week during a visit to Shanghai, one of the cities he is tapping for potential husbands.
Dating is big business in China, a country that is reputedly home to some 180 million single people.
Their desire to be with men 15-20 years their senior means they are looking for someone to take care of them both financially and personally.“Men have a much higher success rate [in finding love] and a much broader selection, since they can choose someone from a lower social group,” said Chen, whose family controls a Chengdu property and hotel empire.“For women, it is almost impossible to choose downwards — their family and friends would not approve and they would face many difficulties.” Mr Du’s hunt for eligible bachelors, a collaboration with Hong Kong-based dating agency Feng Qiu Huang, began on June 18 when he began taking online applications from across China and the world.Phase two of the search will begin on July 20 when organisers start sifting through CVs and vetting the would-be husbands in a series of face-to-face meetings with relationship specialists and fortune-tellers in hotels around China.A shortlist of 100 men will be invited on an all-expenses-paid trip to Chengdu on August 23, China’s Valentines’ Day, for dinner dates with the 36 women, all aged between 28 and 49.
So far around 1,500 men have signed up, including one Australian and several applicants from the US and Canada.