Richard Desmond

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Person.png Richard Desmond   Powerbase Sourcewatch WebsiteRdf-entity.pngRdf-icon.png
(Media Mogul)
Richard Desmond.jpg
BornRichard Clive Desmond
8 December 1951
Hampstead, London, England
English publisher and businessman

Richard Clive Desmond is an English publisher and businessman who started in publishing and founded Northern & Shell in 1974 with two music titles.

In 1983, Richard Desmond won the UK licence to publish Penthouse magazine and then several other pornographic titles, including Horny Housewives. The launch of OK! in 1993 shook up the celebrity magazine world.

In 2000, Desmond bought Express Newspapers, which publishes the Daily Star and Daily Express, for £125 million.



In February 2018, the Trinity Mirror newspaper group sealed a £200 million deal with Richard Desmond to buy his Express and Star national titles, as well as the celebrity magazine OK! Desmond said he remained a “great believer” in the titles and that Trinity Mirror was the “perfect home to make the most of their potential”.

As part of the deal which is subject to Competition and Markets Authority approval, Desmond will receive 25 million Trinity Mirror shares, worth about £20 million, giving him a 9.4% stake and making him the third-largest shareholder. Under the deal, Desmond, who still owns businesses including the Health Lottery, has agreed to spend £32 million over the next five years on advertising in Trinity Mirror titles.

As the owner of Northern & Shell, Desmond will pocket most of the £106.7 million cash portion of the deal.[1]


Northern & Shell owned Channel 5 television before selling it to US broadcaster Viacom for £463 million in May 2014.[2]


In 2010, Richard Desmond was ranked the equal-57th richest man in Britain according to The Sunday Times Rich List, with a net worth of £950 million.[3] In 2016 Forbes estimated his fortune at close to $1.49 billion, while the 2016 Sunday Times Rich List reported his net worth at £2.25 billion, making him the 48th richest person in Britain.[4]


In 2015, Desmond released his autobiography "The Real Deal: The Autobiography of Britain’s Most Controversial Media Mogul".[5]


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