Belfast Telegraph

Britain’s highest-paid boss takes £57 million pay rise

Denise Coates is thought to have made around £322 million last year.

Bet635 donated £85 million to Denise Coates’s foundation last year (Alex Severn/Bet365/PA)
Bet635 donated £85 million to Denise Coates’s foundation last year (Alex Severn/Bet365/PA)

By August Graham, PA City Reporter

Britain’s highest-paid boss has kept her place at the top of the charts after pocketing a £57 million basic pay rise last year.

Denise Coates, the chief executive of Bet365, took home a basic salary of almost £277 million in the year ended March 2019.

It comfortably makes her the highest-paid boss in the country, and comes on top of the around £45 million she is believed to have received in dividends as a major shareholder.

Ms Coates, 52, founded the online gambling company in the early 2000s after spotting the potential of internet betting to revolutionise the industry.

She owns around half of the shares in the company, according to Forbes, which places her 244th in the list of the world’s billionaires, with a net worth of 12.2 billion dollars (£9.3 billion).

Gamblers placed £64.5 billion in bets with the company over the financial year, nearly a quarter up on the year before, Bet365’s accounts show.

Turnover hit almost £3 billion, while the company took £800 million in pre-tax profits.

The business said it spent more in marketing as it tried to entice betters with offers linked to the 2018 World Cup, which was part of this period.

The company also went on a hiring spree over the period, adding more than 600 new staff, to give a total of 4,646, it said.

These staff include those at Stoke City Football Club, which made a loss of £8.7 million in the year after it was relegated from the Premier League.

Total staff costs were £711.2 million.

Ms Coates used the company’s annual report to highlight her charity work. Last year she donated £85 million from the business’s coffers to the Denise Coates Foundation, up from £75 million the year before.

“The size of the donation, and therefore the difference the foundation will be able to make to people’s lives over the coming years, are of great importance to the group,” she said.

PA

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