2016: No.7 - £750m
2015: No.7 - £650m
This time last year we anticipated that Randy Lerner would have sold Aston Villa and exited our Rich List. Turns out that didn’t happen, but Steve Morgan surprised the football world by putting Wolves up for sale.
So this could be Steve Morgan’s Rich List swansong as he prepares to dispose of his major West Midlands investment in the Molineux club. But elsewhere, the major part of his business empire is doing very well indeed. Redrow Homes has smashed through the £1 billion turnover barrier and is posting record profits.
The buoyant housing market – boosted by the Government’s “Help to Buy” scheme continues to be good news for the outgoing Wolverhampton Wanderers owner.
Redrow has recorded strong full year earnings surge on the back of higher prices – up by 18 per cent - and more completions. In the year to the end of June 2015 revenue grew by 33 per cent to £1.15 billion, up from £864 million.
Pre-tax profits were up an impressive 53 per cent to £204 million and chairman Steve Morgan doubled dividends to 4p a share.
All this comes on top of healthy performances in the previous three years and Steve Morgan is predicting that the bubble is showing no signs of bursting, with a full order book. The firm built and sold more than 4,000 homes across the UK.
The company is building homes in the Midlands, but it is the booming London house market which is boosting revenue.
The picture isn’t quite so rosy at Wolverhampton Wanderers. Steve Morgan has put his 100 per cent shareholding up for sale and resigned as chairman. But he leaves a legacy. As well as considerable development at Molineux and new facilities he is investing most of the capital to get the £5.5 million youth project The Way off the ground. The project will welcome youngsters between eight and 19 – and aged 25 for people with disabilities – and is aimed at giving youngsters something to and reduce anti-social behaviour.
He has also left Molineux with a £7 million full-size indoor academy arena giving Wolves some of the best facilities in the country. The new facility has a full-size indoor training pitch with viewing balcony, dressing rooms, classrooms, gym, medical facilities and a Wolves “family suite” overlooking the outdoor floodlit pitch.
Steve Morgan bought Wolves from Sir Jack Hayward for just £10 and pledged to invest at least £30 million on transforming the club and its ground, something he has to exceeded comfortably.
Steve Morgan, aged 62, began his successful business career in construction in 1974 when he founded Redrow Homes with the help of a £5,000 loan from his father. He built it up into one of the country’s most successful house builders. When it floated in 2000 he sold shares worth almost £240 million. In 2012 he abandoned a plan to take it back into private ownership.
In 2001 he founded the Morgan Foundation which helps charities in Cheshire, Shropshire and North Wales, and funds Wolves Aid, which supports local charities.
Born in Garston, South Liverpool, he is married to Didi and has five children. He received the OBE in 1992 for services to construction. In 2010 he was made an Honorary Doctor of Letters by the University of Wolverhampton.