Forbes recently released the list of top 100 billionaires in the World and it features four Indians. Mukesh Ambani continues to be the richest Indian followed by Azim Premji, Shiv Nadar and Lakshmi Mittal.
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Mukesh Ambani is the 4th richest Asian and continues to be the richest man in India, with a net worth of USD 50 Billion. Mukesh has jumped 6 positions from 19th to 13th on the World billionaire list.
Ambani, a Stanford dropout, is the head of Reliance industries, which is India’s second most valuable company. In 2016, Reliance started a price war in India’s telecom sector with the launch of Jio. Jio signed up nearly 280 million customers by offering free domestic calls and data services. This made other operators reduce tariffs to stay in the hunt. This resulted in data services dropping to dirt cheap rates. Jio has also launched virtually free smartphones. Jio is expected to take over DTH and broadband sectors in India.
Azim Premji is the second richest Indian, with a net worth of USD 22.6 Billion. He is ranked 36th in the World billionaire list. Azim’s Wipro is India’s third largest outsourcer, with revenue of USD 8.4 billion.
Like Ambani, Azim too is a Stanford dropout, who gave up on studies to take care of the family’s cooking oil business and then jumped into software. In September 2018, Wipro signed a landmark deal of USD 1.6 billion with Alight Solutions of Illinois, USA. Azim Premji is popular for his charity work.
Shiv Nadar, one of the HCL founders, has jumped three places to finish at third position on India’s billionaire list, with a net worth of USD 14.6 billion, while he is ranked 82nd on the World’s list.
Shiv Nadar chairs HCL, India’s 4th largest software company. In December 2018, HCL and IBM got into a deal worth USD 1.7 billion. Like Premji, Nadar too is a philanthropist and has donated USD 662 million to his Shiv Nadar Foundation.
Lakshmi Mittal dropped one place to settle at 4th in the Indian billionaire list, with a net worth of USD 13.6 billion. The steel magnate is ranked 91st in the World’s billionaire list.
Mittal merged Mittal Steels with Arcelor in 2006, to form ArcelorMittal. It is now the World’s biggest steelmaker and Mittal is the CEO. In 2018, the joint venture bought Ilva at USD 2.1 billion and Essar Steel at USD 5.9 billion.
Uday Kotak, the founder of Kotak Mahindra Bank, jumped seven places to be ranked at 5th in India’s billionaire list. Mr Uday Kotak is ranked 114th in the World’s billionaire list.
Kotak Mahindra Bank is the second largest private sector bank in India and it was boosted by its acquisition of ING’s Indian operations. Kotak Mahindra Bank has a customer base of 16 million.
Aditya Birla Group’s Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla and investor Radhakishan Damani are placed at 6th position in India’s richest list with a net worth of USD 11.1 billion. They have jumped 3 and 5 places respectively from last year’s ranking. Birla and Damani are ranked at 122nd in the World’s billionaire list.
In August 2018, Birla merged his Company, Idea Cellular with Vodafone India, to form Vodafone Idea, which is now India’s largest telecom firm.
Damani holds stake in various companies, ranging from tobacco firm VST industries to beer maker United Breweries. His property portfolio includes the 156-room Radisson Blu Resort in Alibaug, a posh beach-front getaway near Mumbai.
Cyrus Poonawalla jumped 8 places to be ranked 7th in the India’s richest list with a net worth of USD 9.5 billion. The vaccine tycoon is ranked 147th on the World’s billionaire list.
Poonawalla founded Serum Institute of India in 1966 and it is now one of the largest vaccine makers in the World. Serum Institute produces vaccines for measles, polio and flu.
Gautam Adani jumped two positions to rank 8th in India’s list of the richest, while he is ranked 167th in the World’s list. He is the chairman of Adani Group which spans real estate, power generation and transmission, and also commodities.
In August 2018, Adani closed a deal, acquiring Reliance infrastructure’s power business at USD 2.6 billion. Adani entered the petrochemicals sector in a USD 2.6 billion joint venture with BASF, a German company, and has won bids to run 6 domestic airports.
Dilip Sanghvi, the founder of Sun Pharma, slipped one place to be ranked 9th in India’s billionaire list with a net worth of USD 7.6 billion. Sanghvi is ranked 191st in the World’s richest list.
Sun Pharma is the World’s 4th largest speciality makers of generics and India’s most valued pharma outfit.
Nusli Wadia, the chairman of Wadia Group, jumped 8 places to rank 10th in India’s list of the richest, while he is ranked 209th in the World’s list.
Wadia Group includes home textiles company Bombay Dyeing, Britannia Industries and budget airline, GoAir.
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