David and Simon Reuben

David and Simon Reuben

David and Simon Reuben are well known British businessmen and philanthropists. In the Forbes magazine List of billionaires 2011, ranking of the wealthiest people in the UK, the brothers were placed second with an estimated fortune of £5.5  billion ($8.5 billion).[1] They are joint Chief Executives of Reuben Brothers.

Simon Reuben & David Reuben


Early life and career

The brothers were born in Mumbai to a Jewish business family.[1] The brothers increased their fortune during the 1970s and 1980s in both metals trading and property. Nearly half their fortune is in liquid assets such as cash and bonds. They are not keen on publicity, but provide some details about their many interests on their personal website.[2]

Metals Business

In the early 1990s the brother invested in the Russian metals market, financing significantly the production and distribution of metals. The Reubens became the world's third-biggest producer of a metal.

At its peak, their company, Trans-World Metals, and its associates controlled five percent of the world's aluminium output. When Russian aluminium smelters were incapacitated by debt. Trans World entered into tolling arrangements with factories in which they paid for and delivered raw materials in return for finished aluminium, which it then sold for profit. The company's investment in Russia was $1.5 billion (£870 million), with global sales in 1995 topping $7 billion.

Their former status as Russia's biggest foreign investors means they are forced to endure more press scrutiny than they would like to. During their 10 years in the country, the Reuben's did business with some unconventional characters. They also came across several members of the country's new oligarchy, including Roman Abramovich, now owner of Chelsea F.C.

In 2005 they settled a multi-million pound legal dispute with Oleg Deripaska which resulted in a substantial settlement being awarded to the Reubens.

Other Business and Activities

By 2000, the Russian business environment was turning sour for them and they sold all their Russian assets and focused their business activities mainly in the UK property market, where they have a substantial portfolio of debt free assets. With others, they have been involved in financing a number of major acquisitions and also have investments in technology companies. They are always looking out for new investments, increasingly across Europe.

Today their business activities revolve around Real Estate both in the UK and abroad, Venture Capital and Private Equity.

The Wellington Pub Company (the largest free-of-tie pub estate in the UK with approximately 850 tenanted pubs) and Global Switch, (the data centre business) form part of the Reuben Brothers group of companies.

Amongst others the Reuben Brothers own or have a significant stake in are Northern Racing, London Oxford Airport, Luup, Kristal Waters, Ikyp, Spirit Pub Group, Travelodge Hotel, and Metro Bank.

More recently Reuben Brothers returned to the metals business acquiring the metal trading company Metalloyd. Since then Reuben Brothers have moved to expand their mining interests around the world.

Real Estate

The regeneration of the Paddington area of London involves a 1,800,000 sq ft (170,000 m2) development scheme of offices and flats. They will include a 43-story residential tower - the tallest in the West End, where traditionally it has been hard to obtain planning permission for skyscrapers. Called Merchant Square, it will have 559 flats and more than 600,000 sq ft (56,000 m2) of office space. The project is part of an estimated 8 m sq ft of development round the railway station, much of which has already been built. An estimated 30,000 people will eventually work there.

Aldersgate Investments Limited, a Reuben Brothers vehicle, entered a 50:50 joint venture with Park Plaza Hotels Limited to develop a new apart-hotel under the 'art'otel' brand in Hoxton, in the City of London.

The Reuben Brothers have been given the go-ahead to build three towers opposite Tate Britain. The development features a mix of apartments and an apart-hotel on the River Thames next to the Riverbank Park Plaza hotel. The development, designed by Foster & Partners, will see 1960s office building Hampton House demolished and replaced with the three towers, the highest of which stands at 27 stories.

Some of the Reuben's more significant UK Property's include: Millbank Tower; the John Lewis headquarters in Victoria; the American Express offices in Victoria; Carlton House SW1; Academy House on Sackville Street; Connaught House on Berkeley Square; Market Towers; and prime Sloane Street shops.

Reuben Brothers purchased the iconic Piccadilly estate, better known as the In and Out club, which comprises six freehold buildings, which have a planning consent for a six-star hotel and private members’ club

Global Switch

The Reuben Brothers are owners of Global Switch: the largest wholesale carrier neutral data centre provider in Europe and Asia-Pacific

Global Switch has eight data centres: six are located in Europe - in London, Amsterdam, Frankfurt, Paris and Madrid – with centres in Sydney and Singapore serving the Asia Pacific market.

The centres currently total around 3,000,000 sq ft (280,000 m2) of floor space and are occupied by a broad range of customers, global and national, large and small including government organisations, financial institutions, enterprises, global systems integrators, telecommunication carriers, managed service providers and other hosting businesses. Various initiatives are underway which will increase the overall floor space to around 4,000,000 sq ft (370,000 m2). Global Switch's chairman is John Corcoran, a former Multiplex executive, who has been with the company since 2007.

Reuben Foundation

The family are well known for philanthropy and have a charitable wing, The Reuben Foundation, which donates mainly in the healthcare and education sectors through a initial endowment of $100 million. The family are active in the running of the foundation.

> 2004 The Reuben Foundation completed a multimillion pound project to build a school in North London, the school is called the N.Reuben primary school named after their mother. N Reuben School has over 250 students currently enrolled and was given a "stellar" report by Ofsted

> 2005 The Reuben Foundation opened the largest breast cancer unit in the Meir hospital in Israel servicing both the Jewish and Arab community.

> 2008 The Reuben Foundation opened another cancer clinic in Haifa, Israel, servicing all sectors of Israeli society.

> 2008 The Reuben Foundation Great Ormond Street Hospital opened the largest cancer clinics for children in Europe. The center was opened by Mayor Boris Johnson

> 2010 The Reuben Foundation together with Virgin Unite launched 'The Haiti Project' which raised substantial funds for the relief effort.

> 2011 The Reuben Foundation together with the Mayor of London and Mayor of New York launched the Team London programme through a multi-million pound endowment, to encourage volunteering across London

The Reuben Foundation also contributes to the Royal Marsden and The Princess Royal Trust for Carers. The foundation also sponsored the Daily Telegraph spirit of the community awards and are patrons of Tickets For Troops. The Foundation also actively supports the Prince's Trust and the Royal Parks Fund


The Reuben brothers cling tightly to their privacy. Simon Reuben, three years younger than his brother David, has given only one interview to a British publication in his entire career and that was more a case of finding himself in a room with a journalist and having to make polite conversation.

One friend, who spends time with Simon at the Isle de France Hotel in St Barts, said they are "trustworthy and really rather shy." And an executive who works closely with them said: "People often say that they are secretive but it's more a case of being very private. They are just not ostentatious people. David is the trader and Simon is the investor. They work brilliantly together. They are quite different. For example, David is a technophile and loves gadgets while Simon is completely the opposite. But I have been with them when they finish sentences for each other. In a business sense, they are incredibly smart and have a reputation for never having overpaid for anything."

In 2005, they won the Variety Club 'entrepreneurs of the year' award.

Both Reuben brothers are married with children. They both follow Chelsea FC.


External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

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