Is Rishi richer than the King? How much is Rishi Sunak worth?

Rishi Sunak is the UK’s richest prime minister and the only prime minister in history to be wealthier than the ruling monarch, King Charles III.

Sunak and his wife, Akshata Murty, are worth at least £630m (and some estimates peg the figure at more than £700m), although much of this wealth is tied up in Murty’s stake in Indian tech giant Infosys

Murty is the daughter of the Indian entrepreneur N. R. Narayana Murthy (she spells her last name differently from her father) who founded Infosys in 1981. The tech founder has been called the Steve Jobs of India and today the group has a market value of $78bn. According to Forbes, Murthy is worth around $4.5bn. Murty owns 0.93% of the company, which is worth around $725m or £630m, at the time of writing. 

On top of this investment, Murty and Sunak both own a sprawling property portfolio. They have homes in London and California as well as a Georgian mansion in Sunak’s Yorkshire constituency that has 12 acres of land. The value of the couple’s property has been pegged at £16m. 

Then there’s Murty’s stake in Catamaran Ventures UK. This is the British arm of her father’s venture capital and private equity firm. It manages around $1bn in assets across India. According to an investigation by the Guardian, Akshata Murty also has a stake in International Market Management, a company that owns 100% of Mauritius-based Immassociates Mauritius. Immassociates Mauritius holds investments in fast-food restaurants and franchises across India. 

As most of Murty’s investments are privately held, it is challenging to estimate how much she and her husband could be worth, but the stake in Infosys gives us some idea.

On this basis, it seems as if Sunak and Murty are worth at least £630m, and that makes them richer than King Charles III.

Or does it? 

Trying to figure out how much King Charles is worth is even more challenging. Queen Elizabeth II’s personal will is not going to be made public until 2112, so most of us will be dead by the time it’s unveiled. Still, if we assume Charles is inheriting the late queen’s direct wealth, he could be worth as much as £400m according to David McClure, author of The Queen’s True Worth. This includes her personal stamp collection of £100m. 

However, as the ruling monarch Charles III has access to assets held in trust for the sovereign or “in right of the Crown.” These include seven royal palaces (including Buckingham Palace) and 11 castles worth a total of £22bn according to Forbes. Then there are the Crown Jewels (worth around £3.5bn) and the Crown’s art collection (another £7.5bn). Sunak’s portfolio starts to look rather small, in comparison. 

Finally, as the monarch, King Charles III is also the ultimate owner of the Crown Estate. This vast property portfolio is worth £15.6bn and also generated £312.7m for the public purse in its last fiscal year. Around 25% of its profits are returned to the monarch. 

So, while King Charles’s direct net worth might only be somewhere in the region of £400m, his assets as monarch total somewhere in the region of £49bn. 

Even Rishi Sunak and Akshata Murty can’t compete with that kind of wealth.

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