Cotswolds billionaire Nick Candy: From Prince Charles row to Chelsea Football Club bid
Who is the 49-year-old Cotswolds football fan who believes he can raise the staggering sum of £2.5billion to buy Chelsea Football Club? Nick Candy isn’t a household name, but if he saves the struggling London Club from ruin after owner Roman Abramovich’s sanction, he soon will be.
Because if developer Candy manages to get the deal of his life, his days of wandering the unrecognized Cotswold villages are numbered. The eyes of football fans around the world are currently on this well-connected property developer who has already persuaded rulers, oligarchs and some of the richest people in the world to realize his dreams.
But if he can really work out a plan with American investors to see Stamford Bridge redeveloped and return to profitability, he’ll achieve more than just like ‘I’m sure I’ve heard of him but I don’t know who he is ” of fame which he currently enjoys.
Read more: The Cotswold billionaire and his popstar wife are trying to buy Chelsea football club
So far he has built the most expensive building in the world, married a pop star, had a falling out with Prince Charles and tried to oust London Mayor Sadiq Khan without recognition outside of political, civic circles. and social. That could all change, starting this Sunday when he attends Chelsea’s Premier League home game against Newcastle.
“We are reviewing the details of the announcement and are still interested in making an offer,” a spokesperson for Candy told Sportsmail. “Clearly this is a time of great uncertainty for all Chelsea fans. In our view, no one owns a football club – you are the guardian of it for the fans and the community.”
So what do you know about Nick Candy?
It’s not really a rags to riches story
Many try to claim that Nick and his brother went from nothing to becoming billionaires. However, Nick was born at Wimbledon in January 1973 and he and Christian spent most of their youth in Banstead, Surrey. Her father Anthony ran an advertising production company and her mother Patricia was a Greek Cypriot drama teacher.
Both boys were privately educated at Priory Preparatory School and Epsom College. Nick graduated from the University of Reading with a degree in Human Geography and went to work for KPMG accountants. He left and got into advertising where he excelled. Younger brother Christian worked in finance.
The famous story of how he made his money
Nick told the prestigious Mipim conference that the brothers became interested in real estate from a “very young age” because their parents yearned for a better home and coached them in houses in their youth. The rest is legend.
Using a £6,000 loan from their grandmother, they bought a flat in 1995 for £122,000, developed it and sold it 18 months later for £172,000. They started buying and renovating flats in London while working, but left to found Candy and Candy in 1999.
The brothers did well, but their big break came when they bought the Bowater House office block for £150million in 2004 and turned the site into One Hyde Park, one of the most sought-after addresses in the world.
Giles Barrie, a former Property Week editor, said convincing the Qatari royal family to spend £1billion to create what was then the world’s most expensive residential development “sent them into warp”. He added, “What they’ve achieved is mind-blowing and quite mind-blowing.”
He said: “They created something in real estate for the super-rich that no one had thought of. They realized London was becoming a magnet for global wealth and they created a location for this super-rich. -richness.”
Many other high profile real estate programs followed. Around 2011 the brothers went in different directions but always worked together and in 2018 Candy and Candy became Candy and Co with Nick at the helm.
Nick has diversified and Candy Ventures includes a portfolio of global investments in businesses ranging from local food to high tech companies.
How he fell out with Prince Charles
In 2007, the Candy brothers entered into a joint venture with Qatari Diar, part of the Qatari government’s investment arm, to buy the 12.8-acre Chelsea Barracks site from the Ministry of Defense for 959 million of pounds sterling.
But Qatar Diar pulled out of the UK’s most expensive residential deal and in 2010 Candy’s CPC Group sued them for £81million in compensation.
During the trial, it emerged that Qatari Diar’s decision came after Prince Charles wrote a letter telling Sheikh Hamad bin Jassim bin Jaber Al-Thani that his ‘heart sank’ when he saw the design modern proposed for the site by Lord Rogers. There was also a meeting at Clarence House when Prince Charles was accused of pouring poison over the scheme in the Emir’s ear.
Judge Vos described Charles’ letter as “a hand grenade” and ruled in favor of the Candy brothers and they reached an overcompensation settlement. But it has led to a long-running row with architects and planners over the Prince of Wales’ involvement in such matters.
He wants a bigger superyacht
According to the Guardian, the brothers once owned private jets and superyachts Candyscape I and II which featured a self-playing £78,000 Perspex Schimmel piano, a motorboat called Catch Me If You Candy. They also wore £10,000 Girard-Perregaux watches and handmade Berluti shoes at £1,000 a pair.
Nick once told a reporter that when he and his brother lived together their garage contained a Rolls-Royce Phantom, a Rolls-Royce convertible, a Mercedes SLR McLaren, a Ferrari F430 Spider, a Ferrari 575M Maranello, two Range Rovers , a Jeep Cherokee and a Renault Clio. . “It was a lark,” he said. “We loved cars.”
They have properties around the world and in April 2021 Bloomberg reported that Nick had put his London penthouse on the market for £175m and his latest superyacht Eleven Eleven was up for sale for £45m.
“I want to build a bigger yacht,” Candy reportedly said. “It’s like everything in life. Sometimes you want to have a change. Later in life, people contract their life; at this age, I’m still expanding.
How much is it worth?
It’s not worth trying to guess. In the past he has apparently taken umbrage at journalists who underestimate his wealth and in 2014 he was dropped from the Sunday Times rich list after he claimed it significantly undervalued his business interests.
As well as a property portfolio stretching from Monaco to Manhattan, he owns a £10million mansion in the Cotswolds and a £75million flat in Chelsea.
According to Celebrity Net Worth, he and his brother are worth £1.5billion between them.
He’s married to a pop star
Holly Valance grew up in Australia and although her Serbian dad and British mum never had a lot of money, she said: “I never felt bullied and never wanted anything, but I did. grew up in a wealthy area where I saw people having things put back on a plate, so that made me want to earn some money and be able to buy things for myself.
By the time she met Candy at a mutual friend’s party in 2009, she had been a model since she was 14, starred in Australian soap opera Neighbors and was a pop star. Nick proposed to the Maldives and they married in September 2012 in Beverley Hills, California.
According to the MailOnline, he looked suave in a Dolce and Gabbana tuxedo. “The 29-year-old bride wore an extravagant white gown by J’Aton Couture that featured a full feather-like meringue-style skirt and a top-like bodice,” the report read. “She topped it off with a very exaggerated lace veil in a vintage style that doubled as a train and carried a dramatic dark red bouquet.”
Holly, who has appeared in adverts for Schwarzkopf hair care products, has appeared on shows such as Pale Horse and the 2011 series of Strictly Come Dancing. But she now seems to be spending her time elsewhere and is quoted as saying, “I don’t want to be 35 and still put out songs in miniskirts and la-la-la.”
In November 2013 they had a baby and a delighted Nick told the Sunday Telegraph: “Holly is the perfect mother. It was a natural birth. We decided to call her Luka Violet Toni Candy. Her nickname will be LuLu, but if she ever goes into business, LuLu Candy won’t quite work! Their second daughter, Nova Skye Coco, was born in September 2017.
It’s a celebrity couple
The couple are said to have many famous friends and mix in celebrity circles. Simon Cowell was a guest at their posh wedding at the height of his fame and the couple attended Princess Eugenie’s wedding. They are often seen at VIP events such as the opening of the Chelsea Flower Show.
As you’d expect from a man credited with shaking up the global real estate market, there have been a few court cases and fingers pointed at various investments and contacts.
And as the main fundraiser for London Mayor Shaun Bailey’s campaign to oust Sadiq Khan in 2020, he’s been dragged into the Partygate row.
In December 2021, the Daily Mirror published a photo revealing that Nick attended a party with Bailey on December 14, 2020, which allegedly breached coronavirus restrictions at the time.
The brothers have lived the high life all over the world, but both are now married and have children.
Confirming he had bought a £10million Cotswolds mansion which has its own swimming pool, stables and tennis court, Nick told MailOnline’s Richard Eden last summer: “We are looking for years getting something in the Cotswolds for the family, and finally a year ago we found a wonderful family home in a beautiful village We are very much immersed in our quiet country weekend life and love the friendly and welcoming village.”
All that can change if he buys one of the biggest football clubs in the world,
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