• Key Dates:• 1981:• Vincent Tan gains a franchise to open McDonalds restaurants in Malaysia.• 1985:• The Malaysian government privatizes Sports Toto, the state lottery, and sells 70 percent to Tan.• 1990:• Tan acquires full control of Sports Toto, and launches a new holding company, Berjaya Group.• 1992:• The company acquires Unza Malaysia and Manufacturing Services Sendirian Berhard (MSSB), establishing personal care products and other consumer products sales.• 1993:• The company acquires Roasters Grill Inc. in the United States.• 1994:• The company acquires Dunham-Bush, manufacturer of refrigeration and air conditioning systems.• 1995:• Tan launches construction of the Berjaya Times Square complex; the company joins in the launch of the Mutiara Swisscom mobile telephone service (later DiGi).• 1998:• The company acquires the Malaysian franchise for the Starbucks coffee shop operations.• 2001:
• 2001:• Berjaya restructures, and takes over 24 percent of DiGi.• 2003:• Berjaya acquires the Hyundai concession in Malaysia.• 2004:• Berjaya acquires 70 percent of organic food stores Country Farms; Tan joins in the launch of MiTV pay-television service.• Deserving a Break in the 1980s• Vincent Tan left school at the age of 16 and began his career as a bank clerk. Yet Tan quickly displayed an ambitious nature, and by the end of the 1960s had launched a second career selling insurance in the evenings. Tans ability as a salesman soon won him a job as an agency supervisor for American International Insurance when he was just 21 years old.• Toward the end of the 1970s, Tan decided to go into business on his own, founding what was to become one of Malaysias--and the Asian Pacific regions--wealthiest business empires. Tans initial business foray kept him close to the insurance industry. In the late 1970s, Tan set up a joint venture with Tokyo Marine & Fire Insurance.