Brain Food: How he made his pile - The Duke of Westminster, Chairman, Grosvenor group

Who is he? Thanks to a marriage between a Cheshire squire and a teenage heiress in the 17th century, Gerald Cavendish Grosvenor, worth £5 billion, owns 300 acres in Mayfair and Belgravia.

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Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

How did he make his millions? At 28, Westminster inherited a near-bankrupt family business with the prime sites mortgaged, and transformed it into a professional, well-managed property group. He developed Grosvenor's international portfolio, mainly in North America and Australia, while specialising in UK urban developments. Projects include the recent £850 million Paradise Street in Liverpool, Europe's biggest retail development.

Westminster owns a further 156,000 acres around Britain, and his art collection is worth an estimated £200 million.

The secret of his success? An astute businessman, he avoids having to answer to the City by keeping Grosvenor Group private.

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