Home Finance Coates, the owner of Bet365, slips from first to third on top UK tax list

Coates, the owner of Bet365, slips from first to third on top UK tax list

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Denise Coates of Bet365 has dropped to the third place in an annual ranking of top UK taxpayers, while Fred and Peter Done of Betfred have risen to the fourth position.

The Tax List is published annually by The Times and features the 100 top UK tax payers. The top 100 UK taxpayers on the list this year paid PS5,35bn in 2023 (EUR6.27bn/$6.81bn).

Denise Coates, John Coates, and Peter Coates, Bet365’s chief executives, and the chairman, paid PS375.9m as tax. The PS375.9m tax paid by the Coates family, including Denise, John and Peter Coates – Bet365’s co-chief executives and chairman – was less than the PS460.2m reported on the list for 2023.

Denise Coates, who launched Bet365 in a parking lot in Stoke-on-Trent in 2007, is the UK’s richest woman. The Times reported that Coates paid himself a total amount of PS220.0m last year.

Fred and Peter Done, the owners of Betfred paid PS204.6m, a significant increase from PS136.8m owed in 2023. The Done family was able to move up from fourth to third place in the ranking, although they were still some distance behind the Coates’s in third.

Fred and Peter Done were the sons of a bookmaker who was illegal but became legal in 1967 when Betfred launched.

XTX Markets’ founder holds top spot among taxpayers

Alex Gerko, founder of XTX Markets, topped The Times’ Tax List for the second year in a row. He paid PS664.5m total. This is up from PS487.4m he had to pay in 2022, after his networth almost doubled in one year.

Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula 1 billionaire, was second with PS652.6m. This was not an accurate reflection of Ecclestone’s activity since 2023. He had to pay PS650.0m to HMRC in taxes and penalties in order to stay out of jail. Ecclestone did not declare to authorities more than PS400.0m in Singapore trusts when they asked him in 2015.

The rest of the Top 10 was Sir Tim Martin founder of pub-chain Wetherspoons who placed fifth, with PS167.1m tax. Dyson’s founder, Sir James Dyson, was sixth with PS156.0m and Weston Family, behind Primark and Fortnum and Mason ranked seventh, PS146.2m.

Sports Direct’s founder Mike Ashley was eighth, with PS139.4m. Triumph Motorcycles CEO John Bloor ranked ninth with PS118.1m. John Timpson, the owner of Cobbler Tycoons Ltd., rounded out the top 10, with PS99.8m in tax.

Bet365 posts PS61.2m loss despite revenue growth

Bet365 was included in this list after it reported a loss of PS61,2m for the period 2022-2023. It was also able to report an increase in gaming and sports betting revenue.

This loss is in stark contrast with the PS42.8m in profit that was posted last year. Bet365 attributed the loss to an overall increase in business costs.

But it wasn’t all bad. The revenue from sports betting and gaming for this year increased by 18.9%, reaching PS3,39bn. The increase in revenue from sports betting was 15.0%, and gaming revenues were up 31% in 2022-2023.

Alongside that, the number of new customers increased by 29%, though this is lower than last year’s increase of 48%.

Betfred has not yet reported results for the years 2022-2023. The most recent results cover 2021-22, and the gross profit rose by 38.8% to PS542.9m.

Betfred’s total wagering for the past year was PS8.80bn. This represents a 25.8% increase year on year. The net profit was PS19.5m for the entire year, an increase of PS14.3m since 2021.

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