Who is Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the billionaire who wants to buy Manchester United, and how much is he worth?

Who is Sir Jim Ratcliffe, the billionaire who wants to buy Manchester United, and how much is he worth?

Kevin Omuya
February 24, 2023 at 11:02 AM

Sir Jim Ratcliffe has made a first offer to buy out the Glazer family and become Manchester United's dominant shareholder. As a boy living in a Manchester council estate, Ratcliffe cheered for the Old Trafford club. The following is what we know about the man who owns the petrochemicals firm Ineos.

Jim Ratcliffe’s age
INEOS Group chairman Sir Jim Ratcliffe pictured during the signing of an investment pact between chemicals group Ineos and the Antwerp harbour, Tuesday 15 January 2019, in Antwerp. Photo: Dirk Waem
Source: Getty Images

As the Glazer family put Manchester United up for sale, Britain's richest man, Sir Jim, announced his intention to make a buyout bid. Sir Jim, the 70-year-old founder and boss of the chemical firm Ineos, has recently drawn attention to his plan to leave Britain for the tax haven of Monaco. Sir Jim is a staunch supporter of Brexit and a football fanatic.

Personal information




James Arthur Ratcliffe


70 years old as of February 2023

Date of birth

18 October 1952

Place of birth

Failsworth, United Kingdom




Amanda Townson (m. 1985–1995), Alicia Ratcliffe

Organization founded

INEOS Group Limited


The Alchemists: The INEOS Story – An Industrial Giant Comes of Age, The Alchemists: The INEOS Story

Net worth

$15.3 billion

Social media

Instagram, Twitter

Jim Ratcliffe’s age

He was born on 18 October 1952. He is 70 years old at the time of writing. When Ratcliffe was ten, his family uprooted to East Yorkshire from their town council home—attended Beverley Grammar School.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s wife

Jim Ratcliffe’s wife
Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Alicia Ratcliffe. Photo: @sir.jimratcliffe on Instagram
Source: UGC

Sir Jim married Alicia, his second wife, in the mid-1990s. After several years of marriage, the couple had a daughter, Julia. Alicia is 70 years old and practices tax law in Italy. He married his first wife, Townson, in early 1985, but they split up in 1995 after raising two boys, Samuel and George.

Jim Ratcliffe’s salary

His total assets are over $14.7 billion, and he earns nearly $10 million annually. The 69-year-old co-founded the successful business before he established it in 1998.

Jim Ratcliffe's net worth

His net worth is $ 7.4 billion as of 2023. When factoring in his company holdings, his net worth is estimated to be over $15.3 billion, giving him a spot on the list of the world's wealthiest people at number 27.

Jim Ratcliffe’s children

Jim Ratcliffe’s children
CEO of INEOS Football and his sons Sam and Georges Ratcliffe during the Ligue 1 match between OGC Nice and Olympique de Marseille on August 28, 2019, in Nice, France. Photo: Pascal Della Zuana
Source: Getty Images

Jim and his ex-wife Amanda Townson have two sons. His two sons were named Samuel and George. The British billionaire ensured his two sons got the best education possible. They now use their knowledge and skills to help run their father's businesses.

Sir Jim Ratcliffe’s house

He is the proud owner of the hotels Le Portetta (Courchevel, France) and Lime Wood (Switzerland), as well as a mansion on the shores of Lake Geneva (Hampshire, England). He has a 260-foot super-yacht called Hampshire II and other villas, including one in Monaco and one on Lake Geneva, Switzerland, not far from former Formula One World Champion Michael Schumacher's £5 million estate.

Until Lord Montagu of Beaulieu had the first structure, a bungalow called The Bung, constructed in the late 1890s, his New Forest estate was a mix of marshes and arable area. Guests like King Edward VII were entertained there throughout the summer when it was constructed as a beachside hideaway.

Jim Ratcliffe’s art collection

Jim Ratcliffe’s art collection
A portrait of Sir Winston Churchill was painted by Mr. Graham Sutherland and presented to Sir Winston on his 80th birthday. 30th November 1954. Photo: NCJ - Topix
Source: Getty Images

Ratcliffe is known for his extensive and diverse art collection, which includes works by some of the most celebrated artists of the 20th and 21st centuries. One of the most significant pieces in Ratcliffe's collection is a portrait of Winston Churchill by Graham Sutherland. The painting was commissioned by members of the House of Commons in 1954 to honour Churchill's 80th birthday, but the Prime Minister famously hated the portrait, which was later destroyed.

He is also a significant collector of modern and contemporary art. He owns works by artists such as Andy Warhol, Jeff Koons, Gerhard Richter, Damien Hirst, and Anish Kapoor. Some of the highlights of his collection include Warhol's "Mao" and Richter's "Abstract Painting."

Sir Jim Ratcliffe's collection is housed in his London and Hampshire homes, offices, and factories worldwide. London and Hampshire are homes to museums, including the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford and the Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art in Edinburgh.

Jim Ratcliffe’s aircraft

Jim Ratcliffe’s aircraft
Cessna Citation CJ2+. Photo: @airsprintprivateaviation on Instagram
Source: UGC

Jim is also known for his interest in aviation and for owning a private aircraft fleet. Ratcliffe's aviation interests reportedly began in 2010 when he purchased a Cessna Citation CJ2+.

Since then, he has acquired other aircraft, including a Gulfstream G650ER, one of the market's most advanced and luxurious private jets. The G650ER can fly non-stop for over 7,500 nautical miles and reach a top speed of Mach 0.925 (approximately 704 miles per hour).

He also owns a Dassault Falcon 2000LX, another high-performance business jet capable of flying non-stop for up to 4,000 nautical miles. In addition, he reportedly owns a helicopter, a Eurocopter AS355 Twin Squirrel, which is often used for short trips and transportation to remote locations.

Jim Ratcliffe’s autobiography

Jim Ratcliffe’s autobiography
Jim Ratcliffe of Great Britain INEOS Founder and Chairman during the Team INEOS - Press Conference @IneosProCycling / on May 01, 2019, in Yorkshire, United Kingdom. Photo: Michael Steele
Source: Getty Images

The founder of Ineos has yet to publish an autobiography. However, he has been the subject of several biographies and profiles that offer insights into his life and career.

One notable biography is "Jim Ratcliffe: The Billionaire Who Came From Nowhere" by James Ashton, published in 2018. The book chronicles Ratcliffe's rise from humble beginnings in Manchester to become one of the world's wealthiest and most influential businesspeople. It explores his early life, education, early career in the chemical industry, Ineos's founding, and later business ventures.

Another prominent book featuring Ratcliff is "Billion Dollar Whale: The Man Who Fooled Wall Street, Hollywood, and the World" by Tom Wright and Bradley Hope. The book focuses on the financial scandals surrounding the Malaysian government's 1MDB investment fund, allegedly involving money laundering and embezzlement. He is mentioned in the book as one of the business people who invested in the fund, although he has not been accused of wrongdoing.

Jim Ratcliffe and Manchester United

Jim Ratcliffe and Manchester united
Fans pose for photos outside Old Trafford stadium in Manchester north-west England, ahead of the EPL football match between Man Utd and Leicester City, on February 19, 2023. Photo: Scarff Oli.
Source: Getty Images

A formal offer for Sir Jim to acquire 100% of Manchester United has been submitted. Prince Jassim Bin Hamad Al Thani of Qatar and Jim have placed bids on the Premier League team before today's informal deadline. Two years after buying Swiss team FC Lausanne-Sport in 2017, the businessman, reportedly worth $16.1 billion, paid $110 million to acquire French club Nice in 2019.

While Ten Hag wants fans' attention to be on the game, the status of the club's takeover has been all over the news. In addition to Sir Jim Ratcliffe and Sheikh Jassim bin Hamad Al Thani, the American hedge firm Elliott Investment is a strong contender for ownership.

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