Warner Music Owner Len Blavatnik Named Britain's Richest Person

Bertrand Rindoff Petroff/amfAR14/WireImage
Len Blavatnik attends amfAR's 21st Cinema Against AIDS Gala at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc on May 22, 2014 in Cap d'Antibes, France. 

A Ukraine-born, U.S.-educated record label owner is now the richest man in Great Britain. Atop this year's Sunday Times rich list is Warner Music Group owner Len Blavatnik, who jumped from No. 4 to No. 1 in one year's time after increasing his worth from $4.8 billion in 2014 to an estimated $20 billion.

Blavatnik purchased Warner Music in 2011 for $3.3 billion. WMG's portfolio includes Atlantic, Warner Bros. Records, Rhino and Warner Music Nashville, along with publishing services from Warner/Chappell and other companies. Two years after buying WMG, Blavatnik picked up Parlophone, bringing Coldplay, Blur and others to WMG.

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Aside from music, Blavatnik's NYC-based investment company Access Industries has holdings in metals, oil and digital media, including a stake in Spotify. The Odessa, Ukraine native started Access Industries in 1986 and holds degrees from Columbia and Harvard.

The Sunday Times' list also includes Russian tycoon and Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich at No. 10 with around $11 billion. Abramovich recently dipped his toes into music biz waters as an investor in Music Messenger, a mobile app that allows you to send songs to friends.

Virgin Group founder Richard Branson and his $6.2 billion land at No. 20 this year.

Queen Elizabeth, who topped the first list in 1989, has dropped out of the top 300 for the very first time.


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