David McMurtry

Sir David Roberts McMurtry, CBE FRS FREng FIMechE (born 15 March 1940) is an Irish billionaire, the co-founder and executive chairman of Renishaw plc, the UK's largest supplier of metrology equipment. As of October 2021, his net worth was estimated at US$1.3 billion.[2]

Sir David McMurtry
Born (1940-03-15) 15 March 1940 (age 82)[1]
Clontarf, Ireland
EducationMountjoy School
Known forChairman and co-founder, Renishaw plc

Early lifeEdit

David Roberts McMurtry was born in 1940 in Clontarf, Ireland.[3] He was brought up in Dublin and educated at Mountjoy School in Dublin.[4]


McMurtry joined Bristol Aero Engines as an apprentice in 1958.[5] In 1966, following an acquisition, he found himself employed by Rolls-Royce plc where he became Deputy Chief Designer and Assistant Chief of Engine Design at Filton.[5] In 1973, while working on Concorde's engines, he designed his first trigger probe.[5]

In 1973 McMurtry joined his former colleague John Deer to set up Renishaw plc.[5][2] In 1987 he acquired the patents for his trigger probes from Rolls-Royce plc and began to exploit the patents himself.[5]

In 1989 he became a Royal Designer for Industry.[6]

He was awarded the CBE in 1994[7] and was knighted in the 2001 New Year Honours.[8]

McMurty received an honorary doctorate from Heriot-Watt University in 1998.[9]

In 2001, McMurtry was elected a Fellow[10] of the Royal Academy of Engineering.[10] In 2008 the University of Bath[11] awarded him an honorary doctorate. In 2011 he was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society.[12] McMurtry won the Institute of Physics Swan Medal and Prize in 2012.[13]

In 2018, McMurtry stepped down as chief executive of Renishaw and was replaced by marketing and sales director William Lee.[14]

On 2 March 2021, McMurtry, along with John Deer, indicated that they wished to dispose of their entire holdings in Renishaw, comprising some 53% of the shares, as 'we recognise that neither of us is getting any younger'. The Renishaw board then announced that it was launching a formal sale process for the entire company.[15] This process was terminated on 7 July 2021, the board concluding that none of the proposals met their objectives.[16]

Personal lifeEdit

McMurty is married to Teresa and has two sons and a daughter.[17] He lives in Wotton-under-Edge, England.[2]

In 2001 McMurtry started work on Swinhay House. The "£30m futuristic eco-house" appeared in an episode of the BBC television series Sherlock.[3]


  1. ^ Mosley, Charles, ed. (2003). Burke's Peerage, Baronetage & Knighthood (107 ed.). Burke's Peerage & Gentry. p. 2538. ISBN 0-9711966-2-1.
  2. ^ a b c "Forbes profile: David McMurtry". Forbes.com. Retrieved 12 October 2021.
  3. ^ a b "David McMurtry". Independent.ie. 8 March 2015. Retrieved 13 April 2017.
  4. ^ "Irish-born designer receives knighthood". Irish Times. 15 January 2001. Retrieved 14 April 2019.
  5. ^ a b c d e "Renishaw: Biography". renishaw.com. Retrieved 22 March 2018.
  6. ^ New Year Honour for David McMurtry Engineering Talk, 9 March 2001
  7. ^ "No. 53863". The London Gazette (Supplement). 29 November 1994. p. 16701.
  8. ^ "No. 56070". The London Gazette (Supplement). 30 December 2000. p. 2.
  9. ^ "Heriot-Watt University Edinburgh: Honorary Graduates". Heriot-Watt University. Retrieved 4 April 2016.
  10. ^ a b "List of Fellows".[dead link]
  11. ^ comms@bath.ac.uk, University of Bath media team. "Internal News - 27 June 2008 - University of Bath". www.bath.ac.uk. Retrieved 22 March 2018.
  12. ^ "Sir David Roberts McMurtry CBE FREng FRS". Royal Society. Retrieved 19 March 2012.
  13. ^ Physics, Institute of. "The Swan/Business and Innovation medal recipients". www.iop.org. Retrieved 29 March 2016.
  14. ^ "Co-founder of Britain's Renishaw to step down as CEO". Reuters. 24 January 2018. Retrieved 14 August 2020.
  15. ^ "Renishaw PLC - Commencement of formal sale process". Retrieved 16 March 2021.
  16. ^ "Investegate |Renishaw PLC Announcements | Renishaw PLC: Update on Formal Sale Process & Current Trading". www.investegate.co.uk. Retrieved 25 July 2021.
  17. ^ Inventor's Probing Mind Defies UK Industry Meltdown Archived 14 April 2017 at the Wayback Machine Investing News, 16 June 2005

External linksEdit