The top industries of the BRW Rich List: Where Australia’s wealthy are making their money

Solomon Lew

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

The majority of Australia’s richest people are generating wealth from the property sector, if the BRW Rich List is anything to go by.

Of the 200 people on this year’s list, 86 are generating at least part of their wealth from property. While for some, property assets make up just one aspect of their wealth portfolio, for others like Meriton founder Harry Triguboff, property is the primary source of their wealth.

Triguboff has appeared on the BRW Rich List for 33 years but this year is the first time he has topped the annual list of Australia’s wealthiest people.

With estimated wealth of $10.62 billion, Triguboff is the first businessperson from the residential property market to take out first position in the history of the BRW list and only the second person across from the property industry overall, after Westfield’s Frank Lowy was ranked number one in 2010. Lowy is placed third on this year’s list, with estimated wealth of $8.26 billion.

Trigobuff’s estimated wealth has increased from $10.23 billion this time last year, when he was third on the Rich List.

He is one of four people in the top 10 for who property is a source of wealth, alongside Lowy, John Gandel and Hui Wing Mau.

Australia’s richest people are also likely to be generating wealth from investments, with 48 of the 200 people on this year’s Rich List listed as making money from investments. However, many of these people are also generating wealth across a number of other sectors, including property.

Retailers are once again prominent on the Rich List, with 24 people on the list generating wealth in the retail sector. Among these people are the likes of Solomon Lew, Gerry Harvey, Jack Cowin, Nigel Austin, Manny Stul, Brett Blundy and Naomi Milgrom.

Mining and resources continue to be a source of wealth of some Rich Listers, with 18 people on this year’s list generating wealth from that sector. This is closely followed by the group of 18 individuals who are generating wealth from financial services and the 14 individuals whose wealth comes at least in part from the technology sector.

Manufacturing is a source of wealth for 11 of this year’s Rich Listers, while 14 individuals are generating wealth from the agriculture sector. Eight people on this year’s list are building wealth thanks to their involvement in the healthcare sector.


Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
SmartCompany Plus

Sign in

To connect a sign in method the email must match the one on your SmartCompany Plus account.
Or use your email
Forgot your password?

Want some assistance?

Contact us on: or call the hotline: +61 (03) 8623 9900.