The UK billionaires without a degree

A new rich list ranking the wealthiest UK individuals and partnerships who did not go on to higher education at university has been revealed by Informi, the website offering free practical advice and support for small businesses.

There are a total of 13 billionaires according to the list, collectively holding a fortune of £45.5 billion.

The list is comfortably headed by real estate and metals moguls David and Simon Reuben, who hold a net worth of £12 billion, and are the second highest ranking Britons on the entire Forbes rich list behind the Hinduja family.

Also included are well-known celebrities such as Sir Richard Branson (£3.9 billion), the founder of the Virgin Group, and Bernie Ecclestone, former chief executive of the Formula One Group.

Commissioned by Informi ahead of this year’s release of A-Level results in England and Wales on Thursday, the combined net worth of the top five names alone is around £28 billion.

Darren Nicholls, product manager for Informi, said: “For those students nervously awaiting their A-Level results this week, and those who will be receiving their GCSE results the week after, this list demonstrates that some of the UK’s most successful and inspiring business individuals have gained financial success without having gone down the university route first.

“There’s no doubt that higher education can help many people into their career of choice. But equally, if you have a great business idea, you may be able to achieve your dreams and aspirations with the help and support of those around you, and by finding the best sources of expert advice to help you on your way.”



Position Forbes Rich List World Ranking 2017 (UK rank in brackets) Name(s) First job after school Net worth (£ billion) Source of wealth
1 65 (2) David and Simon Reuben Started scrap metals business (David); imported carpets (Simon) £12 Real estate and metals
2 269 (5) Joe Lewis Working in family catering business £4.4 Investments
3 324= (7=) David and Frederick Barclay Accounts department at General Electric Company (both) £3.9 Media and retail
4 324= (7=) Sir Richard Branson Started mail-order records business £3.9 Virgin
5 339 (9) Philip Green Worked at shoe importer £3.8 Fashion retail
6 359 (10) Laurence Graff Apprentice jeweller £3.6 Diamonds
7 367 (11) Clive Calder Band member £3.5 Record label
8 693 (18) Bernie Ecclestone Chemical laboratory assistant £2.3 Formula One
9 717 (19) Peter Hargreaves Computer salesman £2.2 Financial services
10 782 (20) Mike Ashley Squash player £2 Sports retail
11 939 (25) John Caudwell Apprentice at Michelin £1.7 Mobile phones
12 1468= (40=) Richard Desmond Classified advertisements £1.1 Publishing
13 1468= (40=) John Whittaker Joined family’s textile business £1.1 Real estate


Source: Forbes Rich List 2017, Informi





A new free eBook, How to start a business in 20 days, can now be downloaded from the Informi website.


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