There are 171 billionaires in the UK, 24 more than a year ago, according to an annual ranking compiled by the Sunday Times. It was the highest number in the 33 years of the rich list, as the combined wealth of billionaires in Britain grew by more than one-fifth.
The bosses of British online retailers Ocado, Boohoo, The Hut Group (THG) and Asos all benefited from huge increases in their wealth as spending for locked-down consumers migrated online.
The richest person on the list is Sir Len Blavatnik, a Ukrainian-born businessman who made his money from energy and aluminium groups in the former Soviet Union. He previously topped the list in 2015.
However, the increase in Blavatnik’s £23bn during 2020 was mainly down to his investment in the Warner Music record label, which floated on New York’s Nasdaq stock market in June. Blavatnik, who is a US-UK dual citizen after renouncing his Russian passport, increased his wealth by £7.2bn during 2020, the Sunday Times found.