Rishi Sunak, the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party, also happens to be the richest Prime Minister in the UK’s history, as well as the only PM to have a higher net worth than the monarchy.
But how did Rishi Sunak make his money? And how did he end up as UK Prime Minister?
Read on to find out how Rishi Sunak made his money, his political career, height and more.
In this Rishi Sunak guide…
Rishi Sunak Quick facts
Name: Rishi Sunak
DoB: 12 May 1980
Birthplace: Southampton, England
Height: 5 feet 6 inches / 170 cm
Weight: 11 st / 70 kg
Net Worth: £730 million (AU $1.3 billion)
Who is Rishi Sunak?
Rishi Sunak is a British Politician and the current Prime Minister of the United Kingdom and Leader of the Conservative Party. He is the first person of colour and the first Hindu to occupy the position.
An Oxford University graduate, he worked as an analyst for investment bank Goldman Sachs, before becoming a hedge fund manager.
In 2014, Rishi Sunak took his first step into politics, selected as the Conservative (Tory) candidate for Richmond (Yorks), a constituency in North Yorkshire.
Following the Tory landslide during the 2019 General Election, Rishi Sunak became Chancellor of the Exchequer During the Covid-19 pandemic. During his tenure, he famously introducing a furlough scheme, which provided grants for employers to pay for staff.
Following the resignation of former Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Rishi Sunak ran for the vacant position, losing to fellow Conservative MP Liz Truss. She left office after only 44 days, leaving the position open for him to fill on 25 October 2022.
Rishi Sunak was born in Southampton on 12 May 1980. He is of Punjabi descent, with his grandparents moving to the UK in the 1960’s.
Growing up in a wealthy family, Rishi Sunak attended Winchester College, an independent boarding school, where he was head boy.
From there, he read philosophy, politics and economics (PPE) – as many politicians do – at Lincoln College, Oxford, graduating with a first in 2001. He later graduated with an MBA from Stanford University in 2006.
Out of university, Rishi Sunak worked as an analyst for investment bank Goldman Sachs for three years until 2004.
He later went on to become a hedge fund manager in London, where he became a partner in 2006, and later worked for a fund in California in 2009.
From 2013-2015, he was also the director of a venture capitalist firm, owned by his father in-law, Indian businessman Narayana Murthy.
Early Political Career
After finishing with his business career, Rishi Sunak ventured into politics, becoming the Conservative MP for Richmond (Yorks) in October 2014.
Rishi Sunak supported the ‘Brexit’ in the 2016 EU Referendum, which saw the United Kingdom leave the European Union, citing the potential to create tax-free “freeports.”
He was re-elected in the 2017 and 2019 UK General Elections and put forward his support for Boris Johnson, during the 2019 Conservative Party leadership contest.
Rishi Sunak’s support of Boris Johnson led to him being appointing him as Chancellor of the Exchequer in February 2020 ,as part of Mr Johnson’s cabinet reshuffle.
His time as Chancellor was tumultuous – to put it very lightly – aligning near-perfectly with the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He was integral in introducing a furlough scheme to the UK, which gave employers money to pay eighty percent of staff wages during the pandemic. The cost was estimated to be as high as £14 billion a month, before stopping in September 2021.
He also famously introduced the ‘Eat Out to Help Out’ scheme, which aimed to boost the hospitality industry, by subsidising food and drink in pubs, cafes and restaurants by fifty percent. Whether it made a difference or not, is debated – some highlight the rise in Covid infections during this time – but half-price McDonald’s was pretty good while it lasted.
Rishi Sunak was also implicated in the “party gate” scandal during this time, where he was found to have broken Covid-19 Lockdown restrictions by attending a gathering in Parliament when meeting others indoors was forbidden.
He resigned from the position on 5 July 2022 following the way the Conservative Party handled allegations of sexual assault against Tory MP Chris Pincher.
Campaign for Prime Minister
Following Boris Johnson’s resignation a few days later, Rishi Sunak immediately declared that he would be running to be the next Prime Minister.
During the campaign a video emerged, originally from a BBC documentary in 2001, which pictured Rishi Sunak claiming he had no working class friends. He also claimed that when in Parliament, he took money from deprived urban areas.
He, and then-foreign secretary Liz Truss emerged as the two final candidates. Rishi Sunak lost the leadership election, with Liz Truss winning almost sixty percent of the members’ vote.
However, Liz Truss stepped down from her position, after only 44 days in office. Mr Sunak gained enough support from Members of the House of Commons to stand for election. With no other candidates left in the race, Rishi Sunak was made Prime Minister of the UK on 25 October 2022.
This made him the UK’s third Prime Minister in just over three months.
Where did Rishi Sunak make his money?
Rishi Sunak is the richest prime minister in the history of the United Kingdom, with an estimated net worth of £730 million (AU $1.3 billion).
Obviously working as a financial analyst and hedge fund manager makes a pretty penny. According to The Times, Sunak was a multi-millionaire by the time he was in his mid-twenties.
As the Prime Minister, he is also entitled to an annual salary of £164,080 (AU $293,380) a year.
However, the main source of his family’s net worth is actually from his father-in-law Narayana Murthy, a billionaire, who founded IT company InfoSys. He is one of the richest men in India, with an estimated net worth of approximately $4.5 billion (AU $7 billion)
Who is Rishi Sunak’s wife?
Rishi Sunak is married to Akshata Murthy, heiress to her father’s fortune. She has a stake in her father’s company, is the director of a venture capitalist firm and owns her own fashion label Akshata Designs.
Rishi Sunak and Akshata Murthy met while studying at Stanford University. The pair married in Bangalore, India in 2009.
Together, their combined net worth is greater than the monarchy. Before her death, Queen Elizabeth II was thought to have a total net worth of £370 million (AU $662 million). This is the only time in the UK’s history that a Prime Minister is worth more than the monarch.
How many properties does Rishi Sunak have?
Mr Sunak and his wife have four homes worth an estimated £15 million (AU $26.8 million). Two of their homes are in London, including a £7 million (AU $12.5 million) home in Kensington and another property which is used so that relatives can stay there.
They also own a 12 acres-sized mansion in North Yorkshire which includes a swimming pool, ornamental lake, gym and tennis court. This is used at the family’s holiday home.
Finally, the couple have a penthouse apartment in California, supposedly looking over the set where Baywatch was filmed.
With all that money, comes a lot of nice places to live.
Rishi Sunak’s Height
When Rishi Sunak speaks live in Parliament, or during press conferences he very much commands the room. I think we speak for everyone when we say he gives off during “tall-man” energy.
However, you may be surprised to know that Rishi Sunak is very slight in stature, standing at only five foot six.
Given he has been both the Prime Minister and the Chancellor of the United Kingdom, that all but confirms that size doesn’t matter!