Simon Cowell, the pop impresario known for TV shows such as “American Idol,” has amassed a fortune of 200 million pounds ($331 million), enough to propel him into the Top 10 of U.K. musical millionaires, the Sunday Times said.
Cowell, 51, increased his personal wealth by 35 million pounds over the past year, taking him to No. 6 from 11 in the music section of the Sunday Times Rich List, which will be published on May 8, the newspaper said.
“Simon Cowell owns a share of the programs he’s involved in as well as being in front of the camera,” Rich List editor Ian Coxon said yesterday in a telephone interview. “He’s busy behind the scenes and also responsible for many of the performers, so he’s making pots of money in all directions.”
The annual Sunday Times Rich List is based on identifiable wealth, including land, property and other assets such as art and racehorses, or significant shares in publicly quoted companies, and excludes bank accounts, the paper said.
The music millionaires are led by South African-born Clive Calder, with a 1.3 billion-pound fortune from the sale of Zomba Records in 2002. Andrew Lloyd Webber takes second place with 680 million pounds, even though he managed to drop 20 million pounds during the year, according to the Sunday Times. The third place is taken by his fellow impresario Cameron Mackintosh, whose wealth increased by 40 million pounds to 675 million pounds.
New entries include Moya Doherty and John McColgan (70 million pounds), who own the show “Riverdance,” and AC/DC’s lead singer, Brian Johnson (50 million pounds).
The soprano Katherine Jenkins, 30, with 13 million pounds, is the richest on the list of those aged 30 or under, followed by Cheryl Cole, a panelist with Cowell on “The X Factor” in the U.K., and Leona Lewis, who came first on that show in 2006.
A U.S. version of “The X Factor” is planned. It hasn’t yet been announced if Cole will appear as a judge. Cowell has left “American Idol” to work on the show.
Cole, Lewis and Katie Mehlua have 12 million pounds apiece, the paper said. The top new entry among the young millionaires is Adele, a joint ninth, with six million pounds. Taio Cruz and Florence Welch, each worth 5 million pounds, are also new.
The members of U2 have a combined fortune of 455 million pounds, up by 26 million pounds. They head the Irish music millionaires.
Edgar Bronfman, chairman and chief executive of Warner Music Group, who topped the music list last year, has returned to the U.S. and is excluded as a result, Coxon said.
The Sunday Times Rich List will appear in a supplement that profiles the 1,000 richest people and families in the U.K. and the top 250 in Ireland. It is compiled by Philip Beresford.
Here are the Top 30 music millionaires:
Ranking 2011 Wealth Change from 2010 1 Clive Calder 1.3 billion No change 2 Andrew Lloyd Webber 680 million -20 million 3 Cameron Mackintosh 675 million +40 million 4 Paul McCartney 495 million +20 million 5 Simon Fuller 375 million +25 million 6 Simon Cowell 200 million +35 million 7 Elton John 195 million +10 million 8 Mick Jagger 190 million No change 9 Sting 180 million No change 10 Keith Richards 175 million No change 11 Olivia and Dhani Harrison 170 million +10 million 12 David and Victoria Beckham 165 million +20 million 13 Jamie Palumbo 150 million No change 13 Ringo Starr 150 million +10 million 15 Tim Rice 143 million +3 million 16 Tom Jones 140 million +5 million 17 Eric Clapton 125 million No change 18 Roger Ames 120 million No change 19 Phil Collins 115 million +7 million 19 Rod Stewart 115 million +10 million 21 Barry and Robin Gibb 110 million No change 22 Roger Waters 105 million +20 million 23 David Bowie 100 million No change 24 Ozzy and Sharon Osbourne 95 million No change 25 George Michael 90 million No change 25 Robbie Williams 90 million +5 million 27 David Gilmour 85 million +7 million 27 Brian May 85 million +10 million 27 Charlie Watts 85 million No change 30 Chris Blackwell 80 million No change 30 Robert Plant 80 million No change 30 Roger Taylor 80 million +10 million
(Richard Vines is the chief food critic for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Opinions expressed are his own.)