Finance

Rich List revealed: Here are the wealthiest retailers in Australia

Eloise Keating /

Solomon Lew

Premier Investments Chairman Solomon Lew. Source: AAP Image/Julian Smith

It’s that time of the year again when the fortunes of Australia’s wealthiest individuals are ranked, and dissected, on the AFR Rich List.

This year’s list has again been topped by the usual suspects and the ongoing absence of women in the ranks of the nation’s richest is also again on display (of the 200 people on the list, 19 are women, eight of which are billionaires).

Visy’s Anthony Pratt is holding on to the top position on the list, with an estimated personal fortune of $12.9 billion, which is up on last year’s estimation of $12.6 billion.

Property developer Harry Triguboff has retained his second place on this list, with estimated wealth of $12.77 billion, and Gina Rinehart is again in third position, with estimated wealth of $12.68 billion.

Plenty of this year’s Rich Listers saw their fortunes change significantly over the past 12 months, including Clive Palmer, whose estimated wealth jumped from $344 million last year to $2.84 billion this year, thanks in part to some wins in court. Meanwhile, Atlassian founders Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar both doubled their estimated fortunes, from $2.51 billion each last year, to $5.16 billion this year.

The total wealth of this year’s list is also higher than last year’s: $282.7 billion versus $233.1 billion.

Property is once again the industry responsible for most of the wealth on the list, but retail is in second place.

New entrant Alan Wilson and his family appear at number 16 on this year’s list, with estimated wealth of $3.87 billion. Wilson is the executive chairman of plumbing company Reece and is the highest ranked retailer on the list.

Rich List stalwart Solomon Lew is the second highest ranked retailer this year, thanks to his estimated fortune of $2.55 billion. It’s been a big 12 months for the chairman of Premier Investments, who continues to fight for a change of direction at department store Myer.

Australia’s third highest ranked retailer is fast food veteran Jack Cowin, who has built an empire from KFC and Hungry Jack’s outlets across the country. He’s also a major shareholder and chairman of Domino’s Pizza, and is estimated to be worth $2.41 billion.

It should be noted that many of the top retailers on the list also derive significant wealth from other areas, including property and investments.

Here are Australia’s 10 wealthiest retailers, according to the Australian Financial Review:

  1. Alan Wilson and family, Reece – $3.87 billion
  2. Solomon Lew, Premier Investments – $2.55 billion
  3. Jack Cowin, Competitive Foods – $2.41 billion
  4. Gerry Harvey, Harvey Norman – $2.12 billion
  5. Nigel Austin, Cotton On – $1.96 billion
  6. Manny Stul and family, Moose Enterprises – $1.73 billion
  7. Brett Blundy, BB Retail Capital – $1.71 billion
  8. Morry Fraid, Zac Fried and families, Spotlight and Anaconda – $1.61 billion
  9. Nick Politis, WFM Motors – $1.35 billion
  10. Russell Withers and family, 7-Eleven and Starbucks – $1.27 billion

The full AFR Rich List is available here.

NOW READ: How these Young Rich Listers gained millions from facing failure and looking after their staff

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Eloise Keating

Eloise Keating is the editor of SmartCompany. Previously, Eloise was news editor at Books+Publishing, the trade press for the Australian book industry.

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