India's most admired entrepreneurs
The leadership, diligence, foresight and wisdom that a great entrepreneur demonstrates can help shape a company's -- even a nation's -- destiny. Indian corporate history is replete with business icons who have changed the way the world looks at India, and helped shape a new future for the nation.
But before we move on further, here is a caveat: This list of India's corporate giants is by no means complete. Nor have these Indian business icons been ranked. Their pictures have been arranged in random order. Also, stalwarts like JRD Tata, Dhirubhai Ambani, G D Birla and others who are not amongst us today have not been mentioned in the slide show.
Here's a list of some of India's most admired entrepreneurs. Do share your thoughts with us on the message board below.
Ratan Naval Tata has been in the news for the past few days due to the unseemly controversy over the Nano car plant in Singur, West Bengal.
The 70-year-old is the chairman of the Tata Group, which is one of India's largest conglomerates.
A bachelor, Tata is one of the most admired businessmen not just in India but the world over. He has been at the helm of the Tata empire since 1991.
Image: Ratan Tata, chairman of one of India's largest conglomerates, the Tata Group.
N R Narayana Murthy Nagavara Ramarao Narayana Murthy is the co-founder, non-executive chairman and chief mentor of India's best known software firm, Infosys Technologies Ltd.
Murthy is a globally known and highly regarded entrepreneur.
Image: N R Narayana Murthy, chief mentor and non-executive chairman of Infosys Technologies.
Azim Premji Azim Premji is the chairman Wipro, India's second largest software firm after Tata Consultancy Services.
Premji is credited with transforming Wipro, his family's vegetable oil business, into one of the world's foremost software company.
Although one of the richest Indians, he flies economy class and is happiest when hiking, reading or discussing the foundation he has set up to promote primary education.
Image: Wipro chairman Azim Premji. |
Mukesh Ambani Reliance Industries chairman Mukesh Ambani is, according to Forbes the world's fifth richest man and his net worth is estimated at $43 billion.
The Indian billionaire and his younger brother parted ways after the death of their father, Dhirubhai, the patriarch of the Reliance empire.
Mukesh is currently building a $2-billion home on Mumbai's Altamount Road.
Image: Reliance Industries chairman and managing director Mukesh Ambani.
Anil Ambani Anil Ambani is Mukesh's younger brother. With a net worth estimated at $42 billion, he is also the world's 6th richest man.
The chairman of the Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group, Anil has a vast range of companies under his umbrella: Reliance Communications, Reliance Capital, Reliance Mutual Funds, Reliance Energy, etc.
He is married to former Bollywood actress Tina Munim.
Image: Anil Ambani, Chairman of Reliance Anil Dhirubhai Ambani Group. |
Sunil Bharti Mittal Bharti Group chairman & managing director Sunil Bharti Mittal is one of India's greatest success stories. In just a period of 10 years, he has built India's largest cellular services company.
His net worth is estimated at close to $12 billion.
Image: Bharti Telecommunications chairman Sunil Bharti Mittal.
Rahul Bajaj Padma Bhushan awardee and Rajya Sabha member Rahul Bajaj is the chairman of Bajaj Auto.
An alumnus of Harvard Business School, Bajaj is an outspoken and fearless entrepreneur. His two sons, Rajiv Bajaj and Sanjiv, are now handling the Bajaj businesses, under his guidance.
Image: Bajaj Auto chairman Rahul Bajaj.
Anand Mahindra A Harvard alumnus, Anand Mahindra is the vice chairman and managing director of Mahindra & Mahindra.
The 53-year-old businessman has taken his company to unprecedented heights. He is married to Anuradha Mahindra, who edits three niche magazines.
Image: Anand Mahindra, vice chairman and managing director of India's leading farm equipment and automobile maker Mahindra and Mahindra.
S 'Kris' Gopalakrishnan S 'Kris' Gopalakrishnan is the co-founder and chief executive officer of Infosys Technologies Ltd.
An IIT-Madras alumnus, Gopalakrishnan is a very soft-spoken and shy person. His net worth is estimated to be around $1.4 billion.
Image: Infosys Technologies CEO S 'Kris' Gopalakrishnan.
Nandan Nilekani Co-chairman and co-founder of Infosys Technologies Ltd, Nandan Nilekani is a well know and widely admired entrepreneur.
Image: Infosys co-chairman Nandan Nilekani.
Adi Godrej Adi Godrej, chairman of the renowned Godrej Group, is one of India's great businessmen.
Even when India was still a closed economy, he managed to take his group to great heights. When India embraced economic reforms, he changed the way his group did business to face the challenges of changing times and needs. Godrej is also involved in philanthropy.
Image: Godrej Group chairman Adi Godrej.
Lakshmi N Mittal Lakshmi Niwas Mittal is the chief executive officer of the world's largest steel company, Arcelor Mittal. He is also said to be the richest Indian in the world with a net worth of $45 billion.
Although he resides in London, UK, Mittal still holds an Indian passport. He is also making big ticket investments in India.
Image: Arcelor Mittal CEO Lakshmi Mittal.
Kumar Mangalam Birla Forty one-year-old Kumar Mangalam Birla is among the world's youngest billionaires with a net worth of $10 billion. He is the chairman of the Aditya Birla Group.
The group has giant companies like Grasim, Hindalco, Aditya Birla Nuvo, Idea Cellular and UltraTech Cement in its fold.
Image: Aditya Birla Group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla.
Sabeer Bhatia Sabeer Bhatia co-founded Hotmail, one of the first e-mail services on the Internet, along with Jack Smith.
Later he sold it to software giant Microsoft for $400 million.
Image: Hotmail founder Sabeer Bhatia.