Owners of bet365 and Betfred in top five highest UK taxpayers list

The families are the third and fourth highest taxpayers in the UK respectively, outpaying JD Wetherspoons owner Sir Tim Martin and fast-fashion brand Primark owners the Westons.

UK taxpayers list
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Betfred owners Fred and Peter Done and bet365 owners Denise, John and Peter Coates are two of the five highest taxpayers in the UK. 

Sitting in fourth and third place respectively, the families pay more than the families of Sir James Dyson and the Westons, as well as the owner of UK pub chain JD Wetherspoons Sir Tim Martin. The only two individuals to pay more than the gambling company owners were Bernie Ecclestone and Alex Gerko, who are the former boss of Formula 1 and owner of XTX Markets, respectively.  

Combined, the Betfred and bet365 owners paid £580.5m ($736.3m) in taxes to the UK Government, with the Dones paying out £204.6m while the Coates paid £375.9m.  

The Coates have been among the top highest-paying taxpayers in the UK for several years, being named Britain's highest taxpayer in 2019 when she was taxed £276m. In 2021, Denise Coates remained in this position, despite taking a pay cut of £170m that year.  

Despite falling from the number one position, bet365 has continued to turn a profit, making £3.39bn in 2023 for a year-on-year increase of 19%. Despite this, the company reported an operating loss of £24.5m, with some suggesting the company’s higher spending during the year as the cause.  

While Betfred has yet to report its earnings for 2023, the company grew notably during the year, launching in the US state of Virginia in February as well as introducing its new sportsbook with Mohegan Sun in Vegas. We spoke with current CEO Joanne Whittaker in the latest issue of Gambling Insider about her plans for the company and her experience working alongside Fred Done.  

Other famous faces to make the top taxpayers list included Harry Potter author JK Rowling and singer-songwriter Ed Sheeran, who paid £40m and £36m in tax, respectively, putting them as the 31st and 32nd highest taxpayers in the country.

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