7 (9) David Wilson and family £725m (£520m)

The record-breaking £2.2 billion takeover of Leicestershire-based property group Wilson Bowdon by rivals Barratt Developments has put more than £700 into the Wilson family coffers.

Former chairman David Wilson - who together with his family owned 33 per cent of the business - welcomed the deal which is the biggest to date in the housebuilding industry. He said it was the best way forward for the business.

There was a bit of a battle for Wilson Bowden in the end, with George Wimpey, and a private equity consortium led by HBOS and Scottish entrepreneur Sir Tom Hunter losing out to Newcastle-based Barratt.

The tie-up has created the biggest home-builder in Britain, worth £4.3 billion and employing 7500 people. Barratt has continued to perform well since the takeover with sales up 47 per cent to £1.03 billion and a land bank up nearly 12 per cent. This was only the second acquisition by Barratt in 25 years.

Of the £700 million Barratt paid to David Wilson and family holdings, £300 million was paid in cash and the rest in shares.

Wilson Bowden is based in Ibstock, Leicestershire and was formed in 1961. Ten years later David Wilson, now 66, joined the business after graduating from what was then Leicester Polytechnic. At that time the company had a turnover of just £1 million.

By 1987 David Wilson was running the company and floated it on the London Stock Exchange. It became among the biggest housebuilding concerns in the country. He is married with four children.