Vincent Tchenguiz has quite a few things in common with President-elect Donald Trump.
Both men are successful real estate tycoons, and both estimate their net worth in the billions.
On the night of November 8th, as millions of American voters cast ballots to decide the 45th President of the United States, Tchenguiz and Trump had yet another thing in common: they were both winners.
Of course, Trump rode the wave of momentum generated during the rough and tumble Republican party primaries to secure an historic electoral upset over his Democratic party opponent Hillary Clinton. In doing so, Trump shocked political pundits, pollsters, and the planet’s progressive-leaning population – but Tchenguiz wasn’t surprised in the slightest.
The Iranian-born British citizen and London real estate mogul placed £350,000 ($434,684) in various wagers through the Betfair and Spreadex online betting platforms, all backing Trump to become “leader of the free world” and win the hotly contested presidential race.
When the results rolled in and Trump passed the 270 electoral votes needed to clinch the presidency, Tchenguiz turned his would-be longshots into a £1.2 million ($1.49 million) return. All told, Tchenguiz cleared approximately £850,000 ($1.05 million) in profit by backing the first-time politician.
Speaking with Metro.co.uk to celebrate his big win, Tchenguiz expressed a now familiar sentiment among Trump supporters, stating that he never truly doubted the result:
“I’m surprised by how everybody is stunned that [Trump] actually won. I didn’t think that it was so black and white. But people are so shocked – I should have got much better odds.”
Like hundreds of millions in America and around the world, Tchenguiz spent the evening of November 8th anxiously watching wall-to-wall news coverage as the early East Coast election results rolled in. As he told Metro.co.uk, the early hours seemed to suggest the expected Clinton win would occur rather easily, before results from crucial swing states like Florida and Pennsylvania began suggesting otherwise:
“I was about to go to sleep. Then I switched on to Fox News and I thought no, she’s not winning, it’s almost equal. So I carried on watching a little longer.”
Asked about his personal feelings on the future under four years of Trump-inspired American policy, Tchenguiz told Metro.co.uk that betting on a candidate does not necessarily equate to advocating their beliefs:
“Am I happy? I’m not going to comment, happy or not happy. We’ll see where it goes. Some of his policies are pretty good, some he will have to tone down.”
Already a billionaire in terms of overall net worth, the unmarried Tchenguiz won’t be affected financially by the election windfall, but the pride of being a punter on the right side of an upset is a more apt prize.
Representatives for the England-based Spreadex online betting service issued a statement proclaiming the presidential race to be the most significant betting event in the site’s 17-year history:
“It’s official, the US election is now our single biggest betting event ever and we are seeing some huge bets being placed, including one customer who has staked £200,000 on a Trump victory.”
Trump overcame enormous odds in becoming President-elect, with bettors receiving odds between 2 to 1 and 6 to 1 at various points in the protracted campaign process.