In Focus

Who are the UK’s richest people?

Anglo-Indian brothers top this year’s list of the country’s billionaires

Britain’s super wealthy have grown their combined fortunes by a record £710 billion in just 12 months, it has emerged.

According to The Sunday Times Rich List, “a golden era for the super rich has continued unchecked” despite the fact that “millions of households” are “enduring the sharpest rise in the cost of living for 40 years”.

The paper announced that a “record 177 UK billionaires are identified in the 34th edition of the annual rankings”, six more than in 2021. The increase came as it emerged that the top 250 richest people now have “more wealth than the entire 1,000 entries” of the 2017 list. Here are the UK’s top ten richest people.

1

Sri and Gopi Hinduja

With a fortune estimated at £28.472bn – the largest sum attributed to a family or individual in the Rich List’s 34-year history – their family’s conglomerate has holdings in automotive, banking, oil and other sectors. 

The Hinduja family moved to first place from third in last year’s list, but “all may not be harmonious” in the dynasty, said The Sunday Times. Sri Hinduja, 86, has claimed personal ownership of the Swiss-based Hinduja Bank, but Gopi, 82, and their other brothers claim that Sri has a form of dementia.

2

James Dyson

Speaking of his childhood, James Dyson told the BBC that “money was very unimportant”. However, he now has plenty to spare, with a net worth of £23bn.

His vacuum cleaners became popular in the 1990s and he has since moved on to hairdryers, air-conditioning systems, hand dryers and lighting. 

His most recent invention, the Dyson Zone, is a pair of over-ear noise-cancelling headphones, fitted with an air-purifying mask “that gives the wearer more than a passing resemblance to a cyberman”, said The Sunday Times.

3

David and Simon Reuben

The Indian-born British businessmen have a net worth of £22.265bn, assembled through their extensive property and internet empire.

According to The Sun, the brothers “grew up in poverty and were poorly educated in a state school in Islington”. They had jobs as carpet fitters and scrap metal collectors before founding Trans-World Metals, a company “that specialised in aluminium and tin out of London and copper and tin out of New York”.

The pair have “splashed their wealth on a plethora of boys’ toys”, the paper added, “including a £54million super yacht and a £19million private jet”.

4

Leonard Blavatnik

Investment, music and media mogul Leonard Blavatnik has a net worth of £20bn, down £3bn on last year when he topped the Rich List.

He has a string of “​​glamorous businesses”, including “record label Warner Music and sports streaming provider Dazn”, The Guardian said last year. But the original source of his wealth was “energy and metals companies” formed after the break-up of the Soviet Union.

The Ukrainian-born billionaire also made “billions by buying out heavy industrial companies, including the Texan chemicals and plastics company LyondellBasell and Calpine, which runs gas-fired power plants”, the paper added.

5

Guillaume Pousaz

The Dubai-based Swiss entrepreneur is the CEO and founder of payment platform Checkout.com and the 40-year-old has a net worth of £19.259bn, a £13.7bn increase on 2021.

Millions “use Pousaz’s payments giant without knowing”, The Sunday Times said, as it “provides the financial plumbing behind Netflix subscriptions and Deliveroo orders”. Despite his massive fortune, however, “he and his family continue to fly economy”.

“The biggest risk that I see to my children is to change the way we live our life, for them to think that life is easy,” he said. “You want to stay normal, you want to stay humble.”

6

Lakshmi Mittal

The Indian steel magnate has accumulated £17bn through his role as executive chair of ArcelorMittal, the world’s largest steel and mining company, and chair of stainless steel manufacturer Aperam.

His wealth took a hit when Russia’s invasion of Ukraine forced him to “halt production at his plant in the country’s central city of Kryvyi Rih for six weeks”, The Sunday Times said. ArcelorMittal is also “one of the larger employers” in what is President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s home town.

7

The Weston family

The Weston family, owners of UK-based Wittington Investments, have a net worth of £13.5bn and are the only retailers to make it into the top ten.

Luxury store chain Selfridges was sold by the family last December, shortly after the death aged 80 of Galen Weston, but the family still owns Fortnum & Mason, as well as furniture retailer Heal’s. Wittington Investments also has a majority stake in Primark’s parent company AB Foods. 

8

Kirsten and Jorn Rausing

Boasting a fortune worth £12bn, the Rausing siblings own a third of the company Tetra Laval, an international food packaging, processing and distribution firm. They are the descendants of Ruben Rausing, a Swedish industrialist who founded the company in 1951.

9

Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken and Michel de Carvalho

With a combined worth of £11.421bn, this British-Dutch couple have interests spanning brewing and banking. 

Charlene owns a 25% controlling interest in the world’s second-largest brewer, Heineken, and is the richest person in the Netherlands. Meanwhile, Michel is a former Olympic luger and child actor who later turned to finance, becoming director of Citigroup and now chairman of London-based Capital Generation Partners.

They met on a skiing holiday in Switzerland and have five children.

10

Michael Platt 

Hedge fund manager Michael Platt is the co-founder and managing director of BlueCrest Capital Management. The Jersey-based private investment company “recorded returns of 25% in 2018, 50% in 2019, 95% in 2020 and 30% in 2021”, said Bloomberg

With a personal fortune of £10bn, Platt rounds off the top ten of The Sunday Times’s 2022 Rich List. 

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