In the Land Down Under, a man’s wealth is measured by… well, his wealth. The Australian Financial Review (AFR) put out its annual Rich List for 2017, and it wasn’t too surprising to see two Australia casino games moguls, James Packer and Len Ainsworth, near the top.
All in all, Australia’s top 200 wealthiest people boast a record-setting cumulative wealth of $233 billion in 2017. The top 10 are worth a combined $75 billion alone, with “Anthony Pratt & Family” topping the list at $12.6 billion. This is Pratt’s first time atop the Rich List, thanks to immense growth in his US cardboard box manufacturing and recycling business, Pratt Industries.
AFR attributed this year’s boom in financial status to, “A surging property market, a comeback for manufacturing, strengthening iron ore prices and high performers in the technology and financial services industries”.
The nation is clearly experiencing a boost in wealth when it comes to gambling companies, as well. Then again, Australia casino tycoons Packer and Ainsworth have never had much trouble when it comes to finances. One created his own wealth more than six decades ago, and the other comes from a long line of business savvy entrepreneurs.
Australia Casino Magnate James Packer
At 49 years of age, James Packer is the Executive Chairman of Crown Resorts Limited, one of the largest Australia casino and entertainment businesses. The company wholly owns and operates Crown Melbourne and Crown Perth, and has substantial interests in Crown Sydney, Aspinalls of London, and the online gaming venture, CrownBet.
James Packer inherited an abundance of wealth and corporations from his father, media mogul Kerry Packer, who took over the family business from his father, Sir Frank Packer. Needles to say, James was born into money, but he’s proved worthy, managing his finances well enough to stay on top of the game for more than a decade.
Packer’s interests in Crown Resorts are his own doing, having established the company in 2007, two years after his father’s death. However, the family’s estimated worth has dropped some since Kerry Packer was running things.
In 2004, Kerry Packer was valued at $6.5 billion. AFR now estimates James Packer to be worth $4.75 billion (down from $5 billion last year), putting him in the 9th spot among Australia’s richest businessmen.
Australia Casino Games Tycoon Len Ainsworth
Now 93 years old, Len Ainsworth is no spring chicken, but his business sense remains sharp as a tack. He’s been among the country’s wealthiest men since long before such statistics were tracked and published.
Ainsworth’s financial dominance began back in 1953 when he founded Aristocrat Leisure, the most successful Australia casino games manufacturer in history. He headed the company up until 1994, when he was diagnosed with cancer. Len divested most of his shares to his wife and their 7 sons, leaving the company in their capable hands.
In 1995, after Len learned the diagnoses had been false, he founded a new Australia casino games company, Ainsworth Game Technology (AGT). Although it’s never grown to the immense heights of Aristocrat, AGT is still considered one of the most successful manufacturers of slot machines in the world.
With plenty of interests in Aristocrat and a continued role as Chairman of AGT, Len Ainsworth is enjoying a very comfortable life these days with his wife Gretel. AFR has estimated the Ainsworth family to be worth $3.07 billion (up from $1.92 billion last year), putting Len at #11 on the 2017 Rich List.