Topshop tycoon Sir Philip Green whined yesterday that the media is to blame for his battered image.
Sir Philip’s public profile as “king of the high street” took a battering after the collapse of BHS and lurid allegations about his dealing with staff.
But he said in a BBC interview: “You lot make them all f****** jealous, that’s why.
“It’s quite basic. These people writing this s*** couldn’t spell 50 quid. They all get jealous.”
And asked about the £1.2billion dividend he and wife Tina paid themselves from family firm Arcadia in 2005, he hit back: “That was 14 years ago.”
His comments came after Arcadia was saved when creditors including store landlords narrowly voted in favour of plans for an overhaul.
Sir Philip denied the business had been on the verge of going bust on Wednesday, saying: “It didn’t come close to collapse, we won the vote. It was a legitimate vote and we have won.”
He told the Mirror he now needed time after working “24/7” on the deal, which may have saved around 17,000 jobs.
He also refused to comment on speculation that further store closures were possible in time. “It’s not something today I want to get engaged in,” he said.
“I just want to breathe for half an hour. Let’s have a day off.”
The deal, which could yet be challenged, will involve closing 48 stores, and losing around 1,000 jobs.
Rents on 194 stores will be cut by up to 50%. The Greens will pump several hundred million pounds into the business and its pension fund.