Raj Kundra

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Raj Kundra
Raj kundra.jpg
Raj Kundra

OccupationBusinessman, Entrepreneur
Spouse(s)Kavita Kundra (div) Shilpa Shetty (2009–present)

Raj Kundra is a British businessman who has had various investment interests, including both cricket and mixed martial arts. He is married to Shilpa Shetty, a Bollywood actress.


Raj Kundra's father was a Punjabi who migrated from Ludhiana and became a bus conductor in London before running a small business. His mother worked as a shop assistant.[1]

Kundra was born and raised in London.[2] As of 2009, Kundra was Chief Executive Officer of Essential General Trading LLC, which was described in a press release as being "a Dubai-based international trading company dealing in precious metals, construction, mining and green renewable energy projects". He was also at that time involved in the financing and production of Bollywood movies.[3]

Kundra has been married twice, first to Kavita Kundra, with whom he had a daughter,[4] and then on 22 November 2009 to the Bollywood actress Shilpa Shetty.[5] Kundra and Shetty have a son, born on 21 May 2012.[6]

Kundra is involved with a charitable organisation called the Shilpa Shetty Foundation.[2] His book titled How Not to Make Money was published in 2013.[7]


As of 2013, Raj Kundra was associated with Groupco Developers, a real estate firm that operated in eight Indian cities, Ashwini Steel, which made mild steel from scrap, TMT Global, which claimed to predict stock prices, Essential Sports and Media which was involved with production and distribution apart from sports, and Iconic Investments, which claimed to be a private fund trading in equity markets. Other ventures included Gold Gate Trading, which described itself as a trade and investment firm based in Dubai.[1]

In 2015, Kundra was among the promoters of online and television broadcast platform Best Deal TV, an Indian television home shopping channel capitalising on celebrity endorsements. His co-promoter was Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar.[8]

In 2019, Viaan Industries Ltd - a Raj Kundra Promoted Company Partners With Indian Cyber Security Whizkid Manan Shah[9][10]

Indian Premier League[edit]

In 2009, Kundra and Shetty invested in the Indian Premier League cricket team Rajasthan Royals using an offshore company based in Mauritius as the vehicle for doing so. The couple hoped to use Shetty's image and status as a "global brand" as a means of boosting the image of the team through merchandising and media exposure, as well as attracting sponsors.[2][3] The legality of the investment was questioned by departments of the Government of India.[11]

In June 2013, Kundra was questioned by Delhi Police with regard to the 2013 Indian Premier League spot-fixing case, which had involved the arrest of some Rajasthan Royals players. Kundra admitted that he had bet on his own team and lost huge amounts in doing so.[12] In July 2015 a panel appointed by the Supreme Court of India imposed a life ban from cricket-related activity on him.[13] In 2018, Kundra denied that he had done anything wrong and said that he was to appeal the ban at the Supreme Court of India.[14] He and his wife had to sell their stake in the business following the ban.[15]

Match Indian Poker League[edit]

Kundra has previously had to shut down two ventures related to online poker and stock games. The former was closed in December 2016 when it became clear that his claims that it was endorsed by people such as Shane Warne and Shahid Kapoor were false. This followed the stock games closure in September of that year, which was due to queries being raised by the Securities and Exchange Board of India regarding its legality. Following these setbacks, in 2017, Kundra entered into a partnership with the International Federation of Poker, using his Viaan Industries business as a vehicle.[16]

Super Fight League[edit]

Kundra and Bollywood star Sanjay Dutt together launched India's first professional mixed martial arts fighting league — the Super Fight League - on 16 January 2012.[17] Legal problems caused the business to cease operating in 2013.[18]


  1. ^ a b "Raj Kundra, from bus conductor's son to biz tycoon". Deccan Chronicle. 7 June 2013. Archived from the original on 8 August 2014. Retrieved 12 June 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  2. ^ a b c Shah, Gouri (11 February 2009). "It's not about getting the best players, but making the weakest stronger" (PDF). Mint. Delhi. Archived (PDF) from the original on 25 November 2011. Retrieved 27 December 2011. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  3. ^ a b "Rajasthan Royals agrees to take strategic investment from Raj Kundra and Shilpa Shetty". London: Blenheim Chalcot. 3 February 2009. Archived from the original on 7 March 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2011.
  4. ^ "Shilpa Wrecked My Marriage". Manchester Evening News. 13 January 2013. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  5. ^ "Thank god, I'll marry only once: Shilpa". The Times Of India. 30 November 2009. Archived from the original on 16 June 2013. Retrieved 1 July 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  6. ^ "Shilpa Shetty gives birth to a baby boy". Rediff. 21 May 2012. Archived from the original on 14 June 2012. Retrieved 7 June 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  7. ^ "Raj Kundra's book now a British crime-thriller". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 23 January 2017. Retrieved 19 August 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  8. ^ "Home shopping channel Best Deal TV to raise Rs 100 cr". Business_Standard. Archived from the original on 16 September 2015. Retrieved 20 May 2015. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  9. ^ ANI (18 June 2019). "Raj Kundra promoted Viaan Industries partners with Indian cyber security whizkid Manan Shah". Business Standard India. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  10. ^ "Viaan Industries Ltd - a Raj Kundra Promoted Company Partners With Indian Cyber Security Whizkid Manan Shah". The Week. Retrieved 18 June 2019.
  11. ^ "Why Raj Kundra is not a stakeholder of Rajasthan Royals". Rediff. 30 April 2010. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  12. ^ Times News Network (6 June 2013). "Raj Kundra confesses to betting in IPL: Delhi Police". The Times of India. Archived from the original on 12 June 2013. Retrieved 6 June 2013. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  13. ^ "IPL scandal: Chennai Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals suspended". BBC News. 14 July 2015. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  14. ^ Koshie, Nihal (25 August 2018). "Rajasthan Royals co-owner Raj Kundra had contact with bookie, says IPL investigator BB Misra". The Indian Express. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  15. ^ "Amitabh Bachchan May Buy Stakes in IPL's Rajasthan Royals: Reports". The Quint. 24 January 2019. Retrieved 17 May 2019.
  16. ^ https://glaws.in/2017/06/01/raj-kundra-international-federation-poker-launch-indian-poker-league/
  17. ^ Olivera, Roshni. "Ready for the Super Fight League?". The Times Of India. Mumbai. Archived from the original on 12 December 2013. Retrieved 19 January 2012. Cite uses deprecated parameter |dead-url= (help)
  18. ^ "Founder Dosanjh optimistic about re-launched SFLs success". The Times of India. 21 July 2016. Retrieved 17 May 2019.