MTV, football teams and owning the British press: How Robert Maxwell made his millions
He started off with literally nothing
Netflix’s newest true crime, Ghislaine Maxwell: Filthy Rich, takes a no-holds-barred look into the lives of sex abusers Ghislaine Maxwell and Jeffrey Epstein. Unlike Epstein, Maxwell was born into a ridiculous amount of wealth thanks to her dad, Robert. In fact, she was the person who introduced Epstein to the Royal Family, and an affluent life over in the UK.
Robert Maxwell was a shady character who lived – and died – mysteriously. He was a Labour MP and had previously been described as a “socialist,” yet one of the richest men in Britain.
Filthy Rich gives us a very brief glimpse into his boujie life, but there’s no word on how he actually made his millions. So, with a net worth of £832 million, this was how Robert Maxwell made all his money:
In the 1940s, and with little money in his pocket, Robert Maxwell was forced to flee his birthplace of Ukraine after most of his family had been murdered in the Holocaust. He ultimately escaped to the UK, where he served against the Germans until the end of World War Two. In 1946, he officially became a British citizen, and used his contacts to become the UK and US distributor for a small publishing house.
By 1951, he’d raised enough money to buy out three-quarters of another small publisher, Pergamon Press. Maxwell raised the business from the ground up, and in a matter of years it became a major publishing house, well-known all over the world.
The media tycoon spent the following 30 years buying and acquiring companies, as well as carrying out his duties as the Labour MP for Buckingham. In 1981, Maxwell was known for the Maxwell Foundation, the British Printing and Communication Corporation (BPCC) and the Maxwell Communication Corporation (MCC).
But… he didn’t stop there.
In July 1984, Robert Maxwell made his biggest purchase to date – acquiring Mirror Group Newspapers for an *eye-watering* £113 million. Four years later, he owned part of MTV, Macmillan Publishers, and a now-closed newspaper called The European. He also bought football teams Derby County and Oxford United.
By the time he died in 1991, Robert Maxwell was a billionaire in US dollars. He lived in Headington Hill Hall in Oxford – which is now owned by Oxford Brookes University.
Ghislaine Maxwell: Filthy Rich is available on Netflix now. For all the latest Netflix news, drops, quizzes and memes like The Holy Church of Netflix on Facebook.
Related stories recommended by this writer:
- Netflix’s Filthy Rich tells the depraved story of Ghislaine Maxwell, but where is she now?
- Netflix’s latest true crime explores the awful case of child trafficker Ghislaine Maxwell
- The best true crime dramas on Netflix, according to their Rotten Tomatoes scores
Featured image via Netflix.