💰Hosking is a multimillionaire city asset manager who donated £1.5 million towards Vote Leave’s Brexit campaign. Hosking launched his own “Brexit Express” poster campaign in the lead up to the referendum.
His focus during the referendum and since has been on Labour voters, donating £50,000 to the Labour Leave campaign and seeking to expose divisions within the party over Brexit. You might think this a little odd for somebody who had previously donated £100,000 to the Conservative Party ahead of the 2015 general election.
During the 2017 general election campaign, he gave financial support to pro-Brexit candidates, saying he wanted to help give Theresa May “an army” of pro-Brexit MPs that was “fully equipped and as big as possible”. This was a clear attempt to use his private wealth to slant the new parliament towards his own Brexit views, especially in anticipation of what he expected would be ‘some short-term economic pain’ and thus potentially change public opinion.
In 2016, Hosking was found by a court to have breached his contractual and fiduciary duties to his former company Marathon Asset Management and was ordered to pay £1.38 million in damages. He was also ordered to pay back £10.4 million he had received in profits from the firm while still working there.
Hosking’s approach to business ethics is similarly dubious. He invested heavily in online retailer Amazon and speaks admiringly of CEO Bezos’s business strategy: “He’s sowing addiction”. According to online financial news site fn, ‘he likes Tim Martin’s UK pub chain JD Wetherspoon for similar reasons.’
Hosking is a shareholder in Premier League football club Crystal Palace. He was reported to have been annoyed when the league’s Executive Chairman Richard Scudamore said that Brexit “doesn’t seem to sit very well when you travel the world like we do. There is an openness about the Premier League. I think it would completely incongruous if we were to take the opposite position.”