Jim Ratcliffe: Turn cast-offs in gold

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Jim Ratcliffe may have once been called Dr. No by the trade unions, for its difficult position in the negotiations, but the richest man in the united KINGDOM is a champion of the beloved.

Through the purchase and turning around of the cast-off parts of the large company, the Mancunian has made its £21bn fortune.

Operating once owned by the likes of oil giant BP, Mr Ratcliffe has created a company whose products and chemical raw materials go in almost everything we touch every day.

And it only took him 20 years to do it.
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Mr. Ratcliffe, 65, has always been involved in chemicals and industry.

After graduating with a degree in chemical engineering from the University of Birmingham, in 1974, he spent a very brief stint in the BP, before you jump to compete with the oil company Esso as a trainee accountant.

Armed with an MBA from the London School of Business, Mr. Ratcliffe moved from the fabric and the chemistry Courtaulds before a career-changing step in the world of private equity when he joined Advent International in 1989.The Art of the deal

The advent has served as a platform for Mr. Ratcliffe, namely the cut and thrust of doing business.

But after only three years, he was already to make a jump in the co-owners of a business based on what was to become a well worn strategy.

He and other businessman John Hollowood decided to buy the BP’s chemicals division in Hythe, Kent for £40m in 1992.

In 1994, it was valued at £100m when it floated on the London Stock Exchange.

It was a high risk move, Mr Ratcliffe admitted.

“I started the business in the days where you had to put all of your worldly possessions on the table,” he said at the London Business School, in an interview.

“I had to put 100% of the shares that I own at this point on the line, so that it was the house, savings, and even the wife and children, which makes you very focused.”

The company, Inspec, went to acquire BP’s speciality chemicals in Antwerp, Belgium.

Mr. Ratcliffe left Inspec to form his own company, Ineos, in 1998, who purchased the Belgian business of £89m.

Today, It is a value of £35bn, according to The Sunday Times Rich List is based on Mr. Ratcliffe’s strategy of buying “old-fashioned or unsexy facilities belonging to large companies where you know that they would be sloppy with the fixed costs”.

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From 181 sites in 22 countries, It achieves a turnover of around £45bn, and employs more than 18,500 people.

Its raw materials are used in everything from packaging for toiletries, medicines and food, to mobile phones and furniture.

Because of his decision not to ever the float of the company and thus have no City shareholders to consult, Mr. Ratcliffe, who owns 60% of Ineos, has been able to move quickly on offers.

In its first 10 years, Ineos has bought more than 20 operations of the large companies such as German chemicals manufacturer BASF, Dow Chemicals in the united states and HERE, once the largest manufacturer in the united KINGDOM.Quadrupled sales

Without a doubt, the most important of these agreements was Ineos’s £5 billion takeover of Innovene, BP’s petrochemical business, in 2005.

For the night, it has quadrupled Ineos sales of more than £18bn and doubled its workforce to 15,000.

Innovene also included the Grangemouth petrochemical plant and refinery, in Scotland, in 2013, became the theatre of tensions in the stand-off with the unions threaten to strike over pay and pensions.

The dispute which led to Mr. Ratcliffe the Bond villain nickname of Dr. No led to Ineos announcing that it was closing the petrochemical plant and cutting 800 jobs.

Shortly after, It reversed its decision when the union Unite has agreed to a survival plan to invest £300 million in the plant to keep it open.

Ineos continues to grow, either through acquisitions, like the purchase of the Forties Pipeline System BP, which provides up to 40% of the UK’s North Sea oil and gas, or through investments in controversial areas such as hydraulic fracturing.

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Ineos has promised to invest £650m in the field of hydraulic fracturing and 2016 created a lot of turmoil around the arrival of the first delivery of shale gas from the u.s. to arrive in the UK.

The company is currently locked in a legal battle with the Scottish government over its moratorium on hydraulic fracturing.

During this time, Mr. Ratcliffe has taken a surprising step from chemicals, when it announced plans to invest £600m to build a new vehicle based on Jaguar-Land Rover Defender, which had been abandoned in 2016.

Ineos then bought Belstaff, the luxury of the bike-to-wear maker whose jackets were once worn by actor Steve McQueen and modelled by the likes of David Beckham.

Then, the company has acquired the Swiss football team FC Lausanne-Sport.

Whether or not these companies could be categorized as dis-liked it is not clear, but Mr. Ratcliffe clearly sees a lot of potential.