Bet365: UK’s best-paid boss hits £320m jackpot

Denise Coates collecting CBE in 2012Image copyright
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Denise Coates was awarded a CBE in 2012 for services to the community and business

Bet365 boss Denise Coates has received a £320m payday, confirming her position as the UK’s best paid executive.

The co-founder of online gambling firm was paid a £277m salary plus dividends as the popularity of online gambling continues to grow.

The firm’s accounts show that in the year to end-March her salary rose from £220m on the previous period.

But the rise comes as the industry faced mounting criticism, including over children gambling.

The privately held company is owned jointly by Ms Coates and members of her direct family, including her brother John, who is joint chief executive, and her father Peter, the firm’s chairman.

Ms Coates earned a first-class degree in econometrics – the application of statistical methods to economic data – from Sheffield University before joining the High Street betting firm, run by her father.

She identified the potential of online gambling in 2000 and invested in the domain name so that she could drive the family business in that direction.

Bet365 made a profit before tax of £791m in the year, compared with £661m the year before.

The group of firms owns Stoke City Football Club, which made a loss of £8.7m in the year.