Rishi Sunak Surpasses King Charles in Latest Sunday Times Rich List Rankings

According to the latest Sunday Times Rich List, British Prime Minister Rishi Sunak and his wife Akshata Murty have surpassed the King in terms of personal wealth. The newspaper’s calculations show that their fortune has increased by over £120 million in the past year, bringing their total wealth to £651 million. In comparison, the King’s wealth grew from £600 million to £610 million during the same period.

Despite this, The Sunday Times has reported that the number of mega-rich individuals in the UK is declining, signaling an end to the country’s “billionaire boom”. Published on Friday, the list reveals the largest decrease in billionaires in the guide’s history – from 177 in 2022 to 165 this year. While the combined wealth of the top 350 individuals on the list amounts to over £795 billion – larger than the gross domestic product (GDP) of Poland – the guide’s compiler, Robert Watts, says it remains to be seen what impact this drop in billionaires may have.

Watts stated, “This year’s Sunday Times Rich List suggests Britain’s billionaire boom has come to an end. Many of our home-grown entrepreneurs have seen their fortunes fall and some of the global super-rich who came here are moving away. Thousands of British livelihoods rely on the super-rich to some extent. We’ll have to wait and see whether we have now reached peak billionaire, and what that means for our economy.”

Topping the list is British-Indian businessman Gopi Hinduja and his family, with a record-breaking wealth of £37.2 billion. However, there were familiar names on the list who saw a decrease in their wealth, such as Sir Richard Branson whose total wealth dropped by £2.4 billion, bringing it back to his 2000 level. Last year’s top climber, Sir Jim Ratcliffe, who recently bought a stake in Manchester United, fell two positions with a decline of £6.1 billion.

One notable name missing from the billionaire club is Stephen Fitzpatrick, the owner of OVO, one of the UK’s largest energy firms. The Sunday Times reports that he suffered a loss of £1.3 billion since last year, with a 60% decline in his shares for his flying taxi venture.

On the other hand, Sir Paul McCartney has joined the list of billionaires, becoming the first UK musician to achieve this status after increasing his wealth by £50 million. This was attributed to his successful tour and the high value of his back catalogue, as well as his songs being covered by artists like Beyonce.

The biggest riser on the list was the Barnaby and Merlin Swire family, whose 200-year-old business made a staggering £8.8 billion. Watts commented, “These may be harder times to create wealth, but The Sunday Times Rich List continues to unearth entrepreneurs building fortunes in diverse and often surprising ways. This year’s new entries include people who have made money from artificial intelligence and virtual worlds as well as plumbing supplies and teaching aides.”

Among the new entries on the list are Euan Blair, the eldest son of Tony Blair, and Formula One driver Sir Lewis Hamilton. This comes as the UK grapples with a cost-of-living crisis, with new figures released this week showing a record 3.1 million food bank parcels being distributed in a year.

The top 10 wealthiest individuals on The Sunday Times Rich List are as follows:
1. Gopi Hinduja – £37.2bn
2. Sir Leonard Blavatnik – £29.2bn
3. David and Simon Reuben and family – £24.9bn
4. Sir Jim Ratcliffe – £23.5bn
5. Sir James Dyson and family – £20.8bn
6. Barnaby and Merlin Swire and family – £17.2bn
7. Idan Ofer – £14.9bn
8. Lakshmi Mittal and family – £14.9bn
9. Guy, George, Alannah and Galen Weston and family – £14.4bn
10. John Fredriksen and family – £12.8bn

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