Latest Secret Rich List Stories

Kahlbetzer Family and Twynam Pastoral

Kahlbetzer Family and Twynam Pastoral

Forged from a hobby farm in Picton NSW, the Twynam agribusiness empire grew to become one of the biggest landholders in Australia. The group is still held by its founders, the billionaire Kahlbetzer family, who own four Dark Companies on the Secret Rich List.

Star Track/Australia Post

Star Track/Australia Post

Bizarrely, the government actually owns a company on the Secret Rich List as Australia Post acquired the “grandfathered” company Star Track. Star Track has an exemption from financial reporting.

The Disney/Murdoch Connection

The Disney/Murdoch Connection

Deep inside the Murdoch family’s global media empire were three Dark Companies exempt from lodging financial accounts in Australia. That was until the $90bn sale to Walt Disney Company in 2019. This is a classic case of Dark Companies being traded.

Bruce Gordon and WIN Corporation

Bruce Gordon and WIN Corporation

Media mogul and Bermuda resident Bruce Gordon has ties to the Murdochs, Packers, major Hollywood studios as well as a disgraced former Italian president. He controls six Dark Companies within his regional television empire WIN Corporation which are exempt from lodging financial accounts with ASIC.

Honan Family and Manildra Group

Honan Family and Manildra Group

Perhaps the Secret Rich List’s largest political donors behind Anthony Pratt, the Honan family own one of Australia’s most lucrative agribusinesses, Manildra Group. They control three Dark Companies which are exempt from lodging financial accounts with ASIC.

Rosemount Estate

Rosemount Estate

Rosemount Estate was founded by the late Bob Oatley in 1974. The winery has moved from one prominent owner to another while being underpinned by the grandfathered exemption. Treasury Wine Estates, Australia’s largest wine producer, is the current owner of this dark company.

Baiada Family

Baiada Family

The Baiada family owns one of the largest poultry empires in Australia, supplying to retailers and fast-food conglomerates including Coles, Woolworths, KFC, Subway and McDonald’s. The Group, with 9 controlling entities on the Secret Rich List, processes and supplies its chicken products under the Steggles and Lilydale brands.

Bill & Imelda Roche

Bill & Imelda Roche

Bill and Imelda Roche turned a small investment in American cosmetics business Nutrimedics into billion dollar property empire, Roche Group. They are linked to three Dark Companies which enjoy “grandfathering” exemptions. 

The Vidors and Toga Group

The Vidors and Toga Group

Ervin and Charlotte Vidor are pioneers in the Australian hotel and property development industries. Through their Toga Group empire, which includes two Dark Companies, the pair control over 10,000 hotel rooms across Australia, New Zealand and parts of Europe.

Ralph Sarich

Ralph Sarich

Ralph Sarich rose to fame in the 1970s as the inventor of the Orbital Engine and Orbital Combustion Process. After selling his stake in Orbital, Sarich ploughed his profits into property development and investment, establishing Cape Bouvard Investments, a Dark Company

Kerry Stokes

Kerry Stokes

Billionaire Kerry Stokes controls most of his vast media and mining empire through Dark Companies which are exempt from normal reporting requirements.  His ASX-listed investment vehicle Seven Group Holdings – controlled by an exempt company on the Secret Rich List – holds a controlling stake in Seven West Media, home of Channel Seven and the West Australian print media. 

Ramsay Health Care

Ramsay Health Care

Founded by one of Australia’s largest Liberal Party donors, the late Paul Ramsay, Ramsay Health Care is the largest private hospital group in Australia with 72 hospitals. Seven dark companies underpin the Ramsay family healthcare empire.

Grahame Mapp

Grahame Mapp

Grahame Mapp has been on every AFR rich list since it was first established in 1984. Mapp has business interests in various sectors, including mining, entertainment, property, and horseracing. He is affiliated with two dark companies on the Secret Rich List.

Buckeridge Family

Buckeridge Family

Sam and Andrew Buckeridge are the sons of construction tycoon the late Len Buckeridge, the founder of Buckeridge Group of Companies (BGC). The pair are directors of three dark companies that are exempt from lodging their financial statements with ASIC.

Belgiorno-Nettis Family

Belgiorno-Nettis Family

The Belgiorno-Nettis family co-founded Transfield Group which most notably built the Sydney Harbour Tunnel and now operates it in a Dark Company. They are large political donors with no less than eight companies on the Secret Rich List. 

Salteri Family

Salteri Family

The Salteri family made its wealth through defence contracts, infrastructure and engineering projects including the construction of the Sydney Harbour Tunnel. They represent one-half of the founding families of the Transfield Group alongside the Belgiorno-Nettis family. The Salteri’s are major political donors and are linked to an intricate web of Dark Companies on the Secret Rich List.

Nicholas Paspaley

Nicholas Paspaley

Nicholas Paspaley is the director of Paspaley Pearling Company, Australia’s oldest and largest pearl producer. He has donated over $1.1 million to the major political parties since the 1998-99 financial year and has one dark company on the Secret Rich List.

Bruce Mathieson

Bruce Mathieson

Billionaire Bruce Mathieson amassed his fortune in the gambling and liquor industry as a long-standing partner of Woolworths via pubs empire ALH Group which he founded. He is a large donor to both major political parties and owns one Dark Company on the Secret Rich List.

Alan Rydge

Alan Rydge

Alan Rydge, chairman of Event Hospitality and Entertainment Ltd, controls Thredbo ski resort, 66 hotels including the Rydges group, the Events Cinema chain and vacant mansions in Australia’s most affluent suburb. Rydge is affiliated with one dark company, Enbeear Pty Ltd.

Solomon Lew

Solomon Lew

Solomon Lew is chairman of ASX-listed company Premier Investments, the largest retail tenant in the country. A prominent figure in the retail industry and large political party donor, Lew has one dark company on the Secret Rich List, Voyager Distribution Co.

Bob Ell

Bob Ell

Bob Ell began his career as a carpentry apprentice prior and founded Leda Holdings in 1976 to become of of Australia’s most wealthy property developers. Ell has since amassed a fortune of $1.98 billion and is the director of eleven dark companies.

Betty Klimenko & Monica Saunders-Weinberg

Betty Klimenko & Monica Saunders-Weinberg

Betty Klimenko and Monica Saunders-Weinberg (right) are the daughters of Westfield co-founder, John Saunders. Their inheritance included five family-owned Dark Companies which are exempt from lodging financial accounts with ASIC and are large donors to both the Liberal and Labor parties.

Marc Besen

Marc Besen

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Frank Lowy

Frank Lowy

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