Facebook’s decision to hire the UK’s former deputy prime minister Nick Clegg as its communications chief was one that seemed to come out of left field.
Clegg had previously held a prominent role in British public life as head of the UK’s third party the Liberal Democrats between 2007 and 2015 and the UK’s deputy prime minister between 2010 and 2015.
However, since the Liberal Democrats' crushing defeat in the 2015 general election and his resignation as leader of the party, his public status has waned.
Now that he has leapt back into the public consciousness with a high-profile job at Facebook, it is time to ask the question – who the heck is Nick Clegg?
Seven things you might not know about Facebook’s latest hire
1) Nick Clegg speaks Dutch
Nick Clegg is one of the fewer than 30m people worldwide who speaks Dutch, thanks to a Dutch mother, Hermance van den Wall Bake.
— Amanda Tamsin #FBPE (@AmandaTStone) February 13, 2017
In fact, Clegg is quite the linguist, speaking German, French, Spanish and English in addition to his mother’s Dutch.
2) Nick Clegg is married to international trade lawyer Miriam Gonzalez
Gonzalez has said she is going to quit her job as a partner in the London office of US law firm Dechert to join her husband in Silicon Valley.
Gonzalez leaves behind a lucrative position, with the average partner at Dechert taking home $2.7m (£2.07m) last year.
However, with her expertise in international trade law and her stellar connections it is hard to see her lacking in job offers stateside.
3) Nick Clegg went to school with Pogues lead singer Shane MacGowan
Clegg was a student at leading public school Westminster which dates its origin back to the 12th century.
One unlikely classmate was stump-toothed Pogues frontman MacGowan, known for his drunken hellraising as the frontman of London Irish punk band The Pogues.
Other schoolmates include documentary maker Theroux whose series such as Louis Theroux's Weird Weekends shone a spotlight on marginal groups such as survivalists and swingers.
4) Nick Clegg was nicknamed “Nick Cleggover” by the tabloids
In a 2008 interview with Piers Morgan in GQ magazine, Clegg was asked how many women he had slept with, his reply – “no more than 30” – sparked a tabloid furore.
Dubbed Nick Cleggover by the redtops, he later said he regretted discussing his sex life.
5) Nick Clegg was an MP for 12 years before losing his seat in 2017
Clegg represented the affluent South Yorkshire seat of Sheffield Hallam from 2005 until his devastating defeat in 2017 by Labour challenger Jared O’Mara.
— The Sun (@TheSun) June 9, 2017
During his time in Parliament Clegg was the Liberal Democrats' home affairs spokesman and the party's spokesman on Europe, before being elected to the leadership of the party in 2007.
6) Nick Clegg is a knight
Clegg’s full title is The Right Honourable Sir Nick Clegg. He was knighted in the 2018 New Year’s honours list and is allowed to call himself The Right Honourable as he is a member of the privy council, traditionally the body that advises the Queen.
7) Cleggmania was a thing
Following a successful performance on a leader’s TV debate in 2010, a phenomenon the press called “Cleggmania” swept across Britain and the Liberal Democrats surged in the polls.
The catchphrase “I agree with Nick” was born after Conservative leader David Cameron and Labour Prime Minister Gordon Brown tried to curry favour with the coming man.
Cleggmania, however, is a distant memory. The decision to take the Liberal Democrats into coalition with the Conservatives and the reneging on a pre-election pledge not to raise tuition fees meant that Clegg’s moment as an unblemished practitioner of new politics was a brief one.