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£70 million settlement for ex-wife of retail millionaire

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The co-founder of an international retailer has been ordered to pay his ex-spouse one-third of his fortune in his divorce settlement. The wealthy businessman separated from his wife in 2013 and later moved in with his former personal assistant. He has since been in a legal battle with his ex-wife over the financial settlement following their divorce. Shoppers in the Greater Manchester area may know of the Internet fashion retailer Asos, the company that the millionaire co-founded in 2000. The company announced that he was selling 1.3 million of his shares worth in the region of £46 million at the current price.

The retail tycoon started the business with a friend in 2000 and saw his company float on the stock exchange in 2001. Asos, which stands for As Seen On Screen, expanded from a U.K.-based operation to a global company under his leadership, and he remains a non-executive director of the organisation. His net worth has been valued at £220 million and includes shares in the company as well as a property portfolio.

His former spouse was demanding a settlement worth half of his fortune in the court battle. But, while the court agreed that she was an equal partner in the relationship when making its ruling that awarded her approximately £70 million, it also took into consideration that her husband had started his business before the couple were married in 2004. He moved out of the family £8.3 million London home in 2014 shortly before moving in with his new friend.

A court will rarely take the reason for a divorce into consideration when making a judgement on property division. A solicitor familiar with family law cases may advise a client on the factors that could affect the final ruling and offer advice regarding complex valuations of business and property assets that are located both at home and abroad.