Jacqueline Gold dead: Ann Summers founder dies aged 62 just weeks after death of her father West Ham boss David Gold | The Sun

ANN Summers founder Jacqueline Gold has tragically died aged 62 just weeks after the death of her West Ham chairman dad.

The British tycoon transformed the retailer into a multi-million pound business after joining the company aged just 19.

Her incredible success made her the 16th richest woman in Britain with a net worth of around £470million.

Jacqueline was the daughter of West Ham United chairman David Gold, who passed away in January.

The mogul, who had been receiving treatment for breast cancer for seven years, recently paid tribute to her "hero" dad.

She shared a moving series of photos of David through the years, with the caption: "We will always be so proud of you Dad".

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Jacqueline's family announced her tragic death with "unspeakable sadness" today.

They said she died with her husband, daughter, sister and brother-in-law by her side.

The family added: "Jacqueline's death comes just two months after the passing of her father, David Gold, the Joint-Chairman of West Ham United FC.

"The thoughts and sincere condolences of everyone at Ann Summers are with Jacqueline's husband Dan, daughter Scarlett, and sister Vanessa at this extremely sad time."

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Jacqueline's sister Vanessa added: "Jacqueline courageously battled stage 4 breast cancer for seven years and was an absolute warrior throughout her cancer journey.

"In life she was a trailblazer, a visionary, and the most incredible woman, all of which makes this news that much harder to bear.

"As a family, we are utterly heartbroken at the loss of our wife, mum, sister, and best friend".

Jacqueline turned Ann Summers from a run-of-the-mill sex shop intoa female-friendly chain that now dominates the High Street.

The tycoon famously introduced the "Party Plan" concept, which saw "parties" held at the homes of customers.

Women would be given presentations on sex toys and lingerie, as well as play party games – with the one rule no men allowed.

The savvy plan allowed Ann Summers to get around laws that prevented sex toys being put on public display.

Jacqueline became chief executive of the company in 1987 with 140 stores now scattered across the UK and Ireland.

A string of celebrities, including Love Island favourites Tasha Ghouri and Megan Barton-Hanson, have since modelled for the chain.

In 2000, Ann Summers acquired the Knickerbox brand, which has now has a concession in every store.

Away from the boardroom, Jacqueline has appeared on the celebrity edition of The Apprentice and ITV show Fortune – Million Pound Giveaway.

Her family today praised the tycoon, who was awarded a CBE for services to entrepreneurship, women in business and social enterprise in 2016.

They added: "Jacqueline is best-known for founding Ann Summers and leading a business run by women, for women.

"She was also an activist for women in business, and championed female entrepreneurs with the ambition to better the working environment for women.

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"From an internship to Chief Executive Officer in less than 10 years, her determination and commitment to creating a unique retail offering led to the creation of a multi-channel retail chain, consisting of retail stores, direct sales ambassadors, and a fast growing online and third-party business.

"It is her vision and creativity that saw Ann Summers grow from an unknown brand to a British household name and stable of the British high street."

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