Millionaire businesswoman Kate Stewart explains how she left school aged 17 as single mother and built empire

A self-made millionaire has explained how she left school as a single mother without any qualifications and went on to build a business empire from nothing.

Kate Stewart made her first million aged 23 with a string of tanning shops and beauty salons, before owning Liverpool’s Heritage Market.

The 33-year-old from Liverpool appeared on the Channel 5 documentary How The Other Half Lives, presented by Eamonn Holmes and Ruth Langsford.

“I left school with no qualifications and had a normal, dead-end job paying £2.50 an hour,” she said.

I got pregnant at 17 and the destiny written for me was ‘you are going to claim benefits and have more kids’. Everyone wrote me off and I thought ‘no’ and came back fighting. That gave me the drive to achieve.

Stewart went on to study at Edge Hill University while raising her daughter Caitlin. She told Holmes and Langsford: “I did a degree and ended up running a company and then invested my money correctly so I built up my own empire.”

Stewart is now so wealthy she spends £1,000 a night to stay in hotels while on business in London and pre-orders clothes online to arrive ahead of her instead of carrying suitcases.

“I don't get embarrassed by my spending, I have worked for everything I have got and I am proud of everything I buy,” she added.

“Sometimes nice clothing and jewellery is your armour, you put your amour on and go out and you are almost playing a role, it makes me feel more confident.”