Lee Man Tat was born in Macau in 1929. He is the eldest son of Lee Siu-nam, who was the third son of Lee Kum-sheung, who founded the company and invented oyster sauce in Zhuhai in 1888.
Lee joined Lee Kum Kee and took over the running of the company from his Father in 1972, when he bought out his uncles with the help of his Father. In 1986, he bought his younger brother's 40% stake.
Lee is married, with five children, and lives in Hong Kong. His eldest son, Lee Wai-chung, joined the Business in 1985.