How He made his Pile: Gordon 'butch' Stewart - Hotelier

Who is he? The Jamaican 'Cupid of the Caribbean' owns the all-inclusive Sandals and Beaches holiday resorts. He also runs the Jamaica Observer newspaper, sponsors the under-achieving Windies cricket team, and was credited with saving Air Jamaica from implosion in 1994. He is said to be worth $1bn.

Last Updated: 31 Aug 2010

How did he make his millions? Butch set up air-conditioning firm Appliance Traders (ATL) in 1968. With the profits he bought a Montego Bay hotel in '81, which became the first Sandals Resort. The chain now boasts 12 hotels on four Caribbean islands, and ATL covers everything from car hire to office equipment.

The secret of his success? Butch learnt early. A childhood hustle involved ferrying the crew of Dr No to the local reefs in his dad's boat. He once said: 'I haven't got time to wait for 5% returns.' He lacked time for gays too. Butch's same-sex couples ban was lifted only when Ken Livingstone pulled Sandals ads from the Tube.

Find this article useful?

Get more great articles like this in your inbox every lunchtime

The art of leadership: From Marcus Aurelius to Martin Luther King

Transformational, visionary, servant… enough is enough.

Lockdown stress: 12 leaders share practical coping tips

In hard times, it's far too easy for the boss to forget to look after...

Don’t just complain about uncertainty, find the tools to navigate it

Traditional in-person research methods won’t work right now, but that’s no excuse for a wait-and-see...

How well have CEOs performed during the coronavirus pandemic?

A new survey offers a glimpse into what their staff think.

Why women leaders are excelling during the coronavirus pandemic

There is a link between female leaders and successful responses to COVID-19.

Why your employees don’t speak up

Research: Half of workers don’t feel comfortable to express concerns - and it’s usually because...