It's official: London is now billionaires' playground

Britain has more billionaires per capita than any other country.

by Elizabeth Anderson
Last Updated: 03 Mar 2015

The number of billionaires living in the UK has topped 100 for the first time ever, according to the 2014 Sunday Times Rich List.

A total of 104 billionaires now call Britain home, with a combined wealth of £301bn between them, which means the UK has more billionaires per head than any other country.

The majority of those are based in London, with the capital home to 72 billionaires. That outstrips closest rival Moscow which has the second highest billionaire population with 48, followed by New York with 43.

Last year, 88 billionaires were living in the UK, worth a total of more than £245bn, according to the Sunday Times Rich List. In 2004, the number of billionaires in Britain was 30, with a combined wealth of £65 billion, it said.

A fortune of £1.7bn is now required to make the top 50 - up from £700m 10 years ago.

Among the new members of the billionaire club is West End producer Sir Cameron Mackintosh, who saw his fortune rise by £175m in the last year and is now worth £1bn.

Sri and Gopi Hinduja,The Indian-born brothers who run the global conglomerate Hinduja Group, saw their wealth rise by £1.3bn in the past year, putting them in the top spot.

Meanwhile Russia's Alisher Usmanov slipped to second place, down from first last year, after losing £2.7bn during the Ukraine crisis.

Philip Beresford, compiler of the annual table and MT contributing editor, said the Russian and Ukrainians at the top of the list had seen their wealth dented by the stand-off with Ukraine. That led to the rouble falling to an all-time low and Russian stocks tumbling.

Most of the billionaires on the list were born abroad, reflecting the lure of London to wealthy international investors.

Top 25

1) Sri and Gopi Hinduja, £11.9bn, up £1.3bn
2) Alisher Usmanov, £10.65bn, down £2.65bn

Russian business magnate Usmanov owns a 30% stake in Arsenal

3) Lakshmi Mittal and family, £10.25bn, up £250m
4) Len Blavatnik, £10bn, down £1bn
5) Ernesto and Kirsty Bertarelli, £9.75bn, up £2.35bn
6) John Fredriksen and family, £9.25bn, up £450m
7) David and Simon Reuben, £9bn, up £719m

The Mumbai-born Reuben brothers made their money in property and  internet

8) Kirsten and Jorn Rausing, £8.8bn, up £3.69bn
9) Roman Abramovich, £8.52bn, down £780m
10) The Duke of Westminster, £8.5bn, up £700m
11) Galen, Hilary and George Weston and family, £7.3bn, up £650m
12) Charlene de Carvalho-Heineken and Michel de Carvalho, £6.36bn, down £635m
13) Mohamed Bin Issa Al Jaber and family, £6.16bn, up £1.65bn
14) Carrie and Francois Perrodo and family, £6.14bn, new entry
15) German Khan, £6.08bn, new entry
16) Sir David and Sir Frederick Barclay, £6bn, up £3.65bn

The Barclay Brothers are best known for their £665m purchase of the Telegraph newspapers in 2004

17) Hans Rausing and family £5.9bn, up £1.18bn
18) Nicky Oppenheimer and family, £4.57bn, up £785m
19) Earl Cadogan and family, £4.2bn, up £525m
20) Joseph Lau and family, £4.03bn, down £570m
21) Sir Philip and Lady Green £3.88bn, no change
22) Denis O'Brien, £3.85bn, up £486m
23) Mike Ashley, £3.75bn, up £1.45bn
24) Sir Richard Branson and family, £3.6bn, up £86m
25) Idan Ofer, £3.43bn, new entry.

- Philip Beresford will compile Britain's Top 100 Entrepreneurs list for MT, published this autumn.

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