18 May 1977 |
Bournemouth, Dorset, England
|Net worth||£220 Million (2014)|
James Benamor became one of the wealthiest young people in the United Kingdom after starting his loan brokerage company, the Richmond Group, in 1999 at the age of 21. Unable to afford advertising at the time he printed leaflets and delivered them on foot, walking 300 km and delivering 30,000 leaflets in the first month.
The growth of Benamor's Richmond Group has attracted media attention. In 2007 it was reported by the Sunday Times Fast Track 100 as 29th fastest growing company in terms of sales, in 2008 it was ranked 34th in the UK by the Profit Track 100 for profit growth, and in 2008, 2009  and 2010 it was rated as one of the 100 best companies in the Sunday Times '100 Best Companies to Work For'. In 2010 Benamor and the Richmond Group won an Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the year Award.
Benamor has been criticised by the Daily Mirror and the BBC for the Richmond Group's ownership of Advantage Loans, a credit broker which ceased trading in 2008. He charged applicants a £50 fee but not all of them received a loan. Customers had to struggle to get their money back.
Benamor was featured in an edition of the Channel 4  documentary series Secret Millionaire, aired on 5 August 2008, a show where wealthy business people go undercover to look for deserving people to give money to. The programme was set in Moss Side in Manchester and revealed that Benamor had dabbled in drugs and turned to petty crime as a teenager. A follow up show broadcast on Christmas Day 2008 showed that Benamor had continued to work with The Settlement, a Manchester charity which appeared on the original show. This included setting up a work experience scheme which had paid for a number of disadvantaged teenagers from Manchester to visit Bournemouth and undergo training and work experience at his company. The scheme was also covered by the BBC.
- Twitter tweet by James Benamor, January 2011,
- Richmond Group. The Sunday Times Fast Track 100 list, December 2, 2007
- The Sunday Times 2008 Rich List - The 100 richest young people, aged 30 and under
- The Sunday Times 2008 Rich List Profile
- Richmond Group. The Sunday Times Profit Track, April 20, 2008
- Richmond Group. The Sunday Times Best 100 small companies list, March, 2008
- Richmond Group. The Sunday Times Best 100 small companies list, March 2009
- The Sunday Times Best 100 small companies list 2010, March, 2010
- 2010 Entrepreneur of the Year Awards winners list
- Caught out by Advantage Loans and Yes Loans
- "Advantage Loans closed to new applications"
- Channel 4 Secret Millionaire Episode
- 'Secret Millionaire in Moss Side', Manchester Evening News, July 31, 2008
- Sunday People report, 3 August 2008
- Secret Millionaire Christmas Special
- BBC South Today video