Sunday, April 21, 2013

New UK's Richest Man Is Arsenal Co-Owner

By Stephen Emmanuel   Posted at  5:10 AM   Offers No comments

(L-R) Alisher Usmanov, Len Blavatnik, Gopi Hinduja and Sri Hinduja

Britain has a new richest man - Russian co-owner of Arsenal Football Club Alisher Usmanov has taken the top spot from the previous Rich List number one Lakshmi Mittal.

Mr Usmanov, who has a near-30% stake in Arsenal, is worth £13.3bn, putting him into the top spot of the 25th annual Sunday Times Rich List.

Researchers found the 1,000 richest people in Britain have wealth totalling almost £450bn.



There are now a record 88 billionaires among the country's wealthiest 1,000 individuals and families, up from 77 billionaires in 2012 and just nine in 1989.

The combined wealth of the top 200 people in the 2013 Sunday Times Rich List is £318.2bn, a more than eightfold rise on the £38bn for the combined wealth of the 200 people featured in the first Rich List in 1989.

In 1989, the Queen was Britain's richest person.

Russian businessman Mr Usmanov started off making plastic bags, but went on to found a business empire with numerous interests.

As well as Metalloinvest, the country's biggest iron ore producer, he owns a stake in mail.ru, the largest internet company, and has a big holding in MegaFon, a mobile phone operator that listed on the London and Moscow stock markets last year.

Uzbekistan-born Mr Usmanov, 59, also owns Sutton Place, the former Surrey home of the late oil baron J Paul Getty, as well as a £48m mansion in north London.

He shares a passion for sport with his wife, Irina Viner, 64, head coach of Russia's rhythmic gymnastics team, whom he met when he was a young fencer.

Second in the list is Ukrainian Len Blavatnik, the highest riser in the list in wealth terms.

Mr Blavatnik is now worth £11bn, an increase of £3.4bn on last year.

Odessa-born Mr Blavatnik, who owns Warner Music, received £2bn last month for his stake in TNK-BP, when company was sold to state-owned Russian oil company Rosneft.

After eight years at the top of the Sunday Times Rich List, steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal has dropped down to fourth place.

Mr Mittal is now only worth £10bn, making him the biggest faller in wealth terms.

The 40% stake Mr Mittal and his wife Usha hold in the steelmaking giant ArcelorMittal has plummeted from £28bn at its peak to £5.95bn.

The highest placed UK-born person in the 2013 Sunday Times Rich List is The Duke of Westminster, ranked eighth and worth £7.8bn. The Duke's interests are mainly in London land and property.

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