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Richard Farleigh


Richard Farleigh

Richard Farleigh
Born (1960-11-09) 9 November 1960
Kyabram, Victoria, Australia
Residence Belgravia, London, United Kingdom[1][2]
Citizenship Australian[3]
Net worth £66 million/A$160 million (2006)[4]

Richard Bruce Farleigh[2][5] (born 9 November 1960)[6] is an Australian private investor. He is currently a member of the Business Review Weekly Rich 200 list, a list of the 200 wealthiest Australian individuals. In 2012, he took on the role as Chancellor of London South Bank University. Farleigh featured in series 3 and 4 of BBC's Dragons' Den. He lives in London, United Kingdom. He previously lived in Monte Carlo, Monaco.[1][7]


  • Early life 1
  • Business 2
  • Dragons' Den 3
  • Chess 4
  • References 5
  • External links 6

Early life

Born Richard Buckland Smith in Kyabram, Victoria, Australia. His foster family gave him the surname Farleigh. He is sixth generation Australian.[8][9] His father was a labourer and sheep shearer. His parents sent him and his other siblings to foster homes when he was aged two. He was one of eleven siblings. Richard was taken into foster care by a family from Peakhurst, Sydney. He attended Narwee Boys High School, excelled at maths and competitive chess, and then won a scholarship to study economics at the University of New South Wales.[5][10][11]

After graduating with honours in the early 1980s, he worked at the Reserve Bank of Australia, then joined Bankers Trust Australia in Sydney when 23 as an investment banker and trader, where he stayed for ten years.[12]


Farleigh left Australia in the nineties.[13] He was then hired to run a hedge fund in Bermuda and moved there with his wife and baby son.[10] There, he became friends with David Norwood, a chess grand master, and three years later, he decided to retire, aged 34, and moved to Monte Carlo. He then spent much time with Norwood investigating research from Oxford University in the UK that had potential commercial applications. IndexIT was the company formed to fund some of these ventures; it was later sold to Beeson Gregory for £20m. At this time he invested his own capital in British technology companies.[14]

In 1999, Farleigh invested £2m in the renovation of the old French Embassy mansion in London's Portman Square, turning it into the private members club Home House.[15]

In 2005, he published a guide to personal investing entitled Taming the Lion: 100 Secret Strategies for Investing (ISBN 1-897597-62-2). He is currently writing a new book named "Confessions of a Serial Entrepreneur", and excerpts are being printed Mondays in City A.M. as well as on his website.[16]

The Rich 200 list estimated his personal wealth at around A$160,000,000. He is ranked as the 876th on the Sunday Times Rich List 2006[17] with an estimated net worth of £66 million.[4]

Several companies Farleigh invested in include: ClearSpeed, Evolution Group, IP2IPO, Proximagen, Home House and Wolfson Microelectronics.[18]

In 2010, Farleigh "launched advisory firm H2O Markets".[19]

Dragons' Den

Farleigh was selected in 2006 to appear as an investor on the British (and original) version of the business-related TV programme Dragons' Den for the show's third series. Farleigh said he would be seeking further investments through the show, saying he was looking to "hopefully uncover the next big thing".[20] It was announced on 21 May 2007, that Richard Farleigh had been dropped from the series.


Farleigh played for Bermuda in the 31st Chess Olympiad in Moscow 1994[21] and for Monaco in the 34th Chess Olympiad in Istanbul 2000.[22]


  1. ^ a b Battle of the cabs: Hailing competition in London’s transport
  2. ^ a b RICHARD BRUCE FARLEIGH director information
  3. ^ Richard Farleigh -
  4. ^ a b "Media Celebrity Services Ltd - Experts - Richard Farleigh". Retrieved 2012-05-26. 
  5. ^ a b Biography
  6. ^ Sambrook, Dave (30 July 2006). "Enter the Dragons".  
  7. ^ nebusiness (2009). Gem of an idea is just one way to make it big. Retrieved 2012-05-10.
  8. ^
  9. ^ Business interview: Australian dragon fired up by success
  10. ^ a b Martinson, Jane (22 February 2007). "Australian dragon fired up by success". The Guardian (London). 
  11. ^ Hohler, Emily (2006-08-11). "Richard Farleigh: from 'backward' child to top investor". [MoneyWeek]. 
  12. ^ "Australian trader turned Business Angel for Delta Index Annual Conference in Dublin". Retrieved 2012-05-26. 
  13. ^ Fame and Fortune: Look down under for potential
  14. ^ Kirby, James (23 April 2006). "Trade secrets from our man on the Riviera". Melbourne:  
  15. ^ Home House, UK.
  16. ^ Working on a new book "Confessions of a Serial Entrepreneur". Retrieved 2012-05-22.
  17. ^ Sunday Times Rich List 2006, Sunday Times
  18. ^ Companies - Ricard Farleigh
  19. ^ Your Business (19 July 2010). "Fears over state plans to improve business funding". London: Telegraph. Retrieved 2012-05-26. 
  20. ^ BBC (2006). Press Office — Two New Dragons Enter the Den. Retrieved 2006-05-14.
  21. ^ "31st Chess Olympiad, Moscow 1994, Bermuda". OlimpBase. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 
  22. ^ "34th Chess Olympiad, Istanbul 2000, Monaco". OlimpBase. Retrieved 6 May 2011. 

External links

  • Richard Farleigh website
  • The Telegraph (2006). Business profile: From swagman to sapphires. Retrieved 2006-04-23.
  • The Times (2007). Double blow for UK nanotech company.
  • The Telegraph (2007). Farleigh's Oxonica in legal fight with supplier.
  • The Financial Times (2008). ‘Dragons’ Den’ chief feels heat in court.
  • The Guardian (2008). Court rules against firm backed by former Dragons' Den star.
  • International Chess Olympiad appearances
  • Business Matters (2010). Interview with Richard Farleigh on success & failure in business .
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