More billionaires in UK than ever, 14 more than last year

From left: Steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal, Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe and singer Adele all featured in The Sunday Times’ 2017 Rich List. The annual list revealed that there are now 134 billionaires in the United Kingdom.
From left: Steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal, Harry Potter star Daniel Radcliffe and singer Adele all featured in The Sunday Times’ 2017 Rich List. The annual list revealed that there are now 134 billionaires in the United Kingdom.

LONDON • There are more billionaires in Britain than ever before, according to the 2017 Rich List published by British national newspaper The Sunday Times.

The annual list, which is in its 29th year, said there are now 134 billionaires in the United Kingdom - up from 120 last year.

London was also revealed to have more billionaires than any other city in the world, with 86.

Despite fears over Brexit, the list's wealthiest 1,000 individuals registered a record total wealth of £658 billion (S$1.2 trillion). This was a 14 per cent increase from last year's figure of £575 billion.

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At the top of the list: brothers Srichand and Gopichand Hinduja, with £16.2 billion - up from £13 billion last year. The duo run London-based Indian conglomerate Hinduja, which invests in property, healthcare, and oil and gas.

List compiler Robert Watts told the BBC: "While many of us worried about the outcome of the EU referendum, many of Britain's richest people just kept calm and carried on making billions." Mr Watts credited a revived stock market for the super-rich's surge in wealth.

Steel magnate Lakshmi Mittal enjoyed the largest increase in wealth. His personal fortune went up more than £6 billion to £13.23 billion.

Other notable movers on the list include inventor James Dyson, who increased his wealth to £7.8 billion, and Russian oligarch Alisher Usmanov, who added more than £4 billion to his £11.79 billion fortune.

Mr Mittal, Mr Usmanov and Sir James are ranked fourth, fifth and 14th on the list respectively.

Adele consolidated her position as Britain's wealthiest female musician by earning £40 million, taking her total net worth to £125 million. Harry Potter stars Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson and Rupert Grint were also on the list, with Radcliffe on £78 million, Watson on £39 million and Grint on £28 million.

Other well-known names include Paul McCartney (£780 million), Elton John (£290 million), Lewis Hamilton (£131 million), and David and Victoria Beckham who have a combined wealth of £300 million, reported Agence France-Presse.

According to Mr Watts, the list's composition has also been injected with more diversity, with more women, as well as people from various ethnic backgrounds and surprising walks of life, joining it. It now takes assets of £110 million to join the ranks of Britain's richest 1,000 people. The figure last year was £103 million, while it reportedly took just £15 million to make the list in 1997.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on May 08, 2017, with the headline 'More billionaires in UK than ever, 14 more than last year'. Print Edition | Subscribe