Hargreaves founders net £56m

Hargreaves Lansdown, the financial advisory giant, reported record profits yesterday and unveiled a 20 per cent rise in its dividend, leaving its co-founders, Peter Hargreaves and Stephen Lansdown, to share a £56m payout.

Revenues for the year to the end of June rose by 15 per cent to £239m, with pre-tax profits soaring 21 per cent to £153m. "We have done incredibly well in the face of such malign markets," said Mr Hargreaves, who owns 32 per cent of the firm.

He also made short shrift of this week's ministerial reshuffle. "It's just one bunch of muppets exchanged for another bunch of muppets," he said. "Not one of them has actually worked in a real business. In fact the last person in any government to have done so was probably Margaret Thatcher."