Spotlighting the region’s most affluent entrepreneurs and their fortunes in 2023, Insider Media’s 2023 roster welcomed a batch of fresh entrants from the steel industry, alongside other innovators and business leaders.
All of them have achieved global acclaim and amassed substantial wealth in diverse sectors, ranging from the inventor of a stair-lift to pioneers in sustainable cardboard packaging and so on.
Here are the top 50 wealthiest business owners from the list.
- Malcolm Healey
2023 wealth: £1.65 billion
2022 wealth: £1.6bn
Seventy-nine-year-old, Malcolm Healey, known for his kitchen company, realized significant returns from the sale of eBuyer, his electronics business, earlier this year. Healey’s Howden-based online retail business, which witnessed a surge in demand for new PCs, gaming consoles, and TVs during the pandemic, propelling its annual sales reaching £241 million. Now with eBuyer off his plate, Healey is focusing on his 111-store-strong Wren Kitchens.
- Lord Kirkham and family
2023 wealth: £1.140bn
2022 wealth: £1.140bn
Coming in second position is 78-year-old Lord Kirkham and his family. Lord Kirkham started his journey with the transformation of an old snooker hall in Doncaster into what would become the renowned sofa retailer DFS in years to come. In the 1990s, he floated the company on the stock market and amassed £450 million from it. Later, he realized an additional £400 million by taking DFS private and selling it to private equity investors.
- Andrew Shelley, William Morrison, and Eleanor Kernighan and family
2023 Wealth: £961 million
2022 Wealth: £927 million
Aged 62, 47, and 49 respectively, the trio hold the third position in 2023 Yorkshire Wealthy Business Owners List. The three eldest children of the late retail magnate Sir Ken Morrison, the “king of the tills” and founder of Morrisons supermarkets, Shelley, Morrison, and Kernighan have ventured into their own businesses, including a farm near Northallerton, holiday rentals close to York, and properties on the island of Mallorca.
- Carol Healey and family
2023 Wealth: £886 million
lth: £905 million
77-year-old Carol is the widow of Property developer Eddie Healey, in collaboration with Paul Sykes, played a pivotal role in constructing Sheffield’s Meadowhall shopping center. Two years ago, Paul Sykes passed away, following which, Carol and her family continue to own the two retail parks.
- Paul Sykes
2023: £775 million
2022: £775 million
Aged 80, Sykes left school without any qualifications and after working as a tyre fitter began making money from car and engine dealing. Sykes later moved into property and he and Eddie Healey sold Sheffield’s Meadowhall shopping centre for £1.17bn.
- The Shepherd family
2023: £755 million
2022: £479 million
Sixth in the list is the Shepherd family. Noteworthy, Don Shepherd ran the Shepherd Group construction company and began focussing on the Portakabin modular building business more than 60 years ago. Today, it employs 2,260 people across seven European nations. Its profits climbed to £73.2 million after a £393.6 million sales in 2022.
- John Jakes
2023 Wealth: £750 million
2022 Wealth: £550 million
Monaco-based 67-year-old Jakes, who in collaboration with Direct Line founder Peter Wood earlier this year took control of the funeral provider Dignity for £281 million, owes his wealth to Steeton’s Acorn Mobility Services.
- Philip Meeson
2023 Wealth: £615 million
2022 Wealth: £589 million
The former 76-year-old RAF pilot has stepped down as the executive chairman of airline Jet2. He is responsible for transforming the freight carrier into Britain’s largest seller of package holidays, flying 16 million passengers last year. Meeson and his trust own 20.7 percent of Jet.com.
- Paul and Johnny Caddick and family
2023 Wealth: £505 million
2022 Wealth: £335 million
Aged 73 and 42 respectively, the father-son duo’s Moda Living joint venture has rapidly become one of the UK’s prominent build-to-rent brands, completing more than 2,000 homes. Paul, the son of a miner, still chairs the Wetherby-based Caddick Group while his son Johnny oversees Moda. In 2022, the group’s profits has more than tripled to £58 million.
- Jon and Susie Seaton
Sector: Teaching aids
2023 Wealth: £485 million
2022 Wealth: £152 million
The Seatons, aged 40 and 42 respectively, earlier this year sold a stake in their teaching aids business, Twinkl, to private equity for around £170 million. Owing its origin to Susie, who worked as a pre-school teacher and struggled to find educational resources online, Twinkl was established in 2010. Jon, a former property lawyer, recalled working long hours in the early days of the Sheffield-based business. The deal with Vitruvian Partners valued Twinkl at around £500 million.
- Lawrence Tomlinson and family
Sector: Care Homes
2023 Wealth: £464 million
2022 Wealth: £300 million
59-year-old Tomlinson’s LNT Group has constructed more than 220 care homes since he took over a care home run by his parents, aged just 23. The primary LNT business reported profits of £102.4 million in 2021-22.
- Steve Parkin
2023 Wealth: £460 million
2022 Wealth: £450 million
Parkin, aged 62 now, earned around £139 million from selling his stake in the logistics giant, Clipper, which he began as a “man with a van.” He has also profited from property investments and owns a bloodstock business. The bloodstock business is valued at almost £60 million.
- Roderick Evans and family
2023 Wealth: £450 million
2022 Wealth: £427 million
Leeds-based 61-year-old Evans is credited with developing and managing a range of properties, including hotels, offices, logistics hubs, civic buildings, and university colleges, which helps generate annual rent of more than £25 million.
- Terry Bramall and family
2023 Wealth: £428 million
2022 Wealth: £429 million
80-yrear-old Bramall’s wealth comes from the Keepmoat construction company, founded by his father. He is said to have made another “seven-figure” investment into Doncaster Rovers Football Club, which is in addition to at least £12.6 million he has already contributed.
- Frank Hester
2023 Wealth: £410 million
2022 Wealth: £309 million
Hester’s Leeds-based software company, The Phoenix Partnership (TPP), is best known for storing 61 million NHS patient records. Hester is said to have recently donated £5 million to the Tory party, citing his admiration for Rishi Sunak’s “passion for using technology.”
- John Tordoff and family
Sector: Car sales
2023 Wealth: £396 million
2022 Wealth: £392 million
Tordoff is the chief executive of JCT 600, the car dealership chain previously run by his late father, Jack, for many years. The Bradford-based group sells 24 car brands from more than 50 locations. His profits saw a slight decline to £43.1 million.
- Peter Wilkinson
2023 Wealth: £381 million
2022 Wealth: £379 million
Wilkinson owns Inhealthcare, which provides services to NHS trusts, as well as the 19,000-acre Pennyholme estate near Helmsley. He, however, amassed his wealth by founding and selling the internet service providers Planet Online and Freeserve.
- John Guthrie and family
2023 Wealth: £368 million
2022 Wealth: £349 million
The Guthries’ Broadland Properties encompasses farming, renewable energy, and various forms of property, including commercial, industrial, and residential. The Guthrie family also owns the Kent tourist attraction, Hever Castle.
- Nick Howarth and family
2023 Wealth: £355 million
2022 Wealth: £182 million
Howarth manages his family’s Howarth Timber chain of 34 timber and builders’ merchants, with its roots tracing back to Lincolnshire-based Arbor Forest Products. It now accounts for nearly half of the group’s £337.3 million in turnover.
- Richard Teatum and family
2023 Wealth: £354 million
2022 Wealth: £171 million
Sector: Car sales
In 2021-22, Teatum’s 64 car dealerships under Stoneacre Group sold nearly 60,000 vehicles. After generating profits of £43.2 million, the Doncaster-based company is projected to be worth around £350 million. Richard Teatum also held nearly 10 percent of the now-collapsed retailer Joules.
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