Another round of hostilities in the war of the rich lists between The Sunday Times and The Mail on Sunday broke out at the weekend.
The MoS attempted to spike The Sunday Times’s Rich List 2001 with a 16-page spoiler Rich Report which majored on the losers in the great dot.com crash.
In January it was The Sunday Times which produced an 11th-hour spoiler to counter The Mail on Sunday’s Rich Report 2001.
Mail on Sunday deputy editor Rod Gilchrist went on the offensive: "We have forced The Sunday Times to dramatically up their game. If you look at their magazine now and then look at our last magazine you can see that they have stolen virtually lock, stock and barrel the new style that we invented.
"They have been forced to copy and steal our style from typeface to design, use of nostalgia pictures and the use of contemporary pictures of famous people with nostalgia pictures set into those pictures." But Ian Coxon, editor of the Rich List, counter attacked by describing the MoS spoiler as "pretty miserable". He said: "I don’t think we have stolen ideas from anybody. The Sunday Times Rich List is widely regarded as the definitive guide to British wealth. We’ve been producing the Rich List for 13 years now and are continually expanding and developing it.
"We’ve gone to higher quality printing for the first time this year and it has produced a fantastic result for our circulation, up over 16 per cent on the previous week."
Gilchrist maintained that The Sunday Times’s list was out of date and had missed the big story. "They stopped compiling that list at the beginning of January," he said. "Since then internet shares have fluctuated fantastically. The big story is who’s losing money and who’s losing the most. We told you that."
But Coxon hit back: "We did take account of the major fallers. The MoS claim they have a huge team working on it but they don’t have the experience that we have. We have a much more comprehensive list and cover Ireland and Scotland. When our list comes out it makes national and international headlines."
Gilchrist also claimed that The Sunday Times had followed the MoS by making their lists more popular and accessible. "I take that as a huge compliment, they have doffed their caps to us. In newspaper terms it’s one of the greatest thefts since the Great Train Robbery."
by Jon Slattery