The boss of gambling website Bet365, Denise Coates, was paid nearly half a billion pounds in salary and dividends last year, as the latest in a string of record-breaking awards took her total pay since 2016 to nearly £1.3bn.
Bet365 revealed that its highest-paid director, understood to be Coates as chief executive, received £421m – or £48,000 every hour of every day - throughout the 12-month period. In its accounts, the company said its pay arrangements were “appropriate and fair”.
Bet365 also paid a dividend of £95m, signalling a separate windfall of around £45m for Coates, who owns more than half of the business.
Together with Peter and her brother John – ranked 16th in last year’s Sunday Times rich list with a fortune of £7bn.
The Scottish National party MP Ronnie Cowan, a vocal advocate of tougher gambling regulation, added: “When the industry is creating so much harm in the community, when it is the most deprived areas that see the most damage and when the industry is in denial in regard to the damage it does, then salaries of this magnitude will always draw criticism.”