The Times – 4th July 2018
The Reuben brothers have pocketed £2.1 billion after selling half their stake in Global Switch in advance of a possible float of the data centre owner in London next year.
The property tycoons have sold a quarter of the business to a consortium of mainly Chinese investors, including Jiangsu Sha, a privately owned Chinese steelmaker, and China Citic Bank, one of the country’s largest lenders. The deal comes less than two years after the Reubens banked £2.4 billion from the sale of a 49 per cent stake in Global Switch, which they bought for £585 million in 2004.
The London-based company has ridden the boom in the digital economy. Over the past decade data centre operators have grown rich on demand for internet storage, thanks to the surge in mobile devices and cloud computing.
The investment is viewed as the most lucrative of the Reuben brothers’ career. David and his younger brother Simon were born in Mumbai. They came to Britain in the 1950s and invested in a variety of industries including carpets, metal and property. They made their fortune in Russian aluminium, controlling an estimated 5 per cent of global production through their Trans-World Metals business. They left Russia in 2000, having made £1.3 billion, and began to buy up marquee properties, including the Millbank Tower and the John Lewis Partnership headquarters in Victoria.
Global Switch aims to go public next year with New York, London and Hong Kong vying for the £8 billion offering.