Updated February 27th, 2024 at 11:39 IST

British financier Lord Jacob Rothschild passes away at 87

The Rothschild family hailed him as "a towering presence in many peoples' lives," acknowledging his contributions to finance, culture, and philanthropy.

Reported by: Business Desk
Lord Jacob Rothschild | Image:Reuters
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Rothschild Banking Family: British financier Lord Jacob Rothschild, a prominent figure in one of Europe's most illustrious banking families, passed away at the age of 87, as announced by his family on Monday, February 26.

The Rothschild family hailed Lord Rothschild as "a towering presence in many peoples' lives," acknowledging his multifaceted contributions to finance, culture, and philanthropy. Described as "a superbly accomplished financier, a champion of the arts and culture, a devoted public servant, a passionate supporter of charitable causes in Israel and Jewish culture, a keen environmentalist and much-loved friend, father and grandfather," Lord Rothschild's legacy resonates across various spheres.

A legacy of finance and public service

Born in England in 1936, Lord Rothschild began his career at the family bank, NM Rothschild & Sons. He later ventured out to establish his financial empire, founding the investment trust RIT Capital Partners. He actively participated in various business ventures, supporting companies ranging from hedge funds to clean technology startups.

Beyond finance, Lord Rothschild held a deep commitment to public service. He served as the deputy chairman of BSkyB Television, held director positions at other companies, and contributed to the Duchy of Cornwall council. He was also a passionate advocate for environmental causes.

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Champion of the arts and culture

Lord Rothschild's influence extended far beyond the financial realm. He was a fervent patron of the arts, serving as the chairman of the National Lottery Heritage Fund and a long-standing supporter of the National Gallery. He even chaired the gallery's board of trustees from 1985 to 1991.

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Tributes pour in

News of Lord Rothschild's passing has been met with an outpouring of tributes. Former Prime Minister Tony Blair called him a "dear friend" and a "wonderful human being," highlighting his global impact in supporting various causes, including the arts, the environment, and peace efforts in the Middle East. The National Gallery also expressed its condolences, acknowledging Lord Rothschild's multifaceted contributions as a “businessman, entrepreneur, philanthropist and cultural leader.”

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(With Reuters inputs.)

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Published February 27th, 2024 at 09:06 IST