How He Made His Pile

Paul Raymond, Property and Publishing Entrepreneur

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Last Updated: 09 Oct 2013

Who is he?

A reclusive porn and property baron who owns two-thirds of Soho, London. In 1958, Raymond opened Britain's first legal strip club, the seed of a soft-porn empire that now includes Mayfair and Razzle magazines.Paul Raymond Publishing and Soho Estates have combined net assets of £301 million, and the man himself is worth about £600 million.

How did he make his millions? Raymond's first revue struggled until he paid his girls extra to go topless. Raymond's Revuebar was his first bargain property buy in Soho, then a run-down area. His acquisitions have just earned him a £10 million dividend.

The secret of his success? Sex sells. Raymond (turning 80 this month) realised this early, and astutely identified the potential of Soho property values. An unsentimental single-mindedness and a love of money drive his deals: leasing his Revuebar to an associate, he then forced it to close by demanding an astronomical rent.

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