Meet the top 3 among 84 billionaires who own over half of India's wealth

Indian business tycoons Mukesh Ambani, Dilip Shanghvi and Azim Premji collectively hold a wealth of $51 billion.

Mumbai: Indian business tycoons Mukesh Ambani, Dilip Shanghvi and Azim Premji collectively hold a wealth of $51 billion, an amount that is about 58 per cent of the country’s total wealth.

The three businessmen are among the 84 richest Indian billionaires, according to a report titled 'An economy for the 99 per cent' by Oxfam, an international confederation of charitable organisations. In fact, they have topped the list of 84 richest Indians.

Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) chairman Mukesh has maintained the tag of the richest Indian with Oxfam report citing his wealth at $19.3 billion. He is followed by pharma magnate Dilip and Azim Premji, who have a wealth of $16.7 billion and $15 billion, respectively.

Let us take a look at their life and career, which made them the top billionaires, not just in the country but also across the globe.

Mukesh Ambani

The chairman, managing director and largest shareholder of RIL.

Age: 59 years

Mukesh was born to Dhirubhai Ambani and Kokilaben Ambani on 19 April, 1957, in Aden, Yemen. He graduated from the Institute of Chemical Technology in Mumbai and later enrolled for an MBA degree at Stanford University in the US, but left the course midway to join his father’s company – Reliance.

Mukesh’s started his career by assisting his father build a polyester filament yarn plant under the Indira Gandhi-government. Oil and gas tycoon later went on to establish one of the world’s largest petroleum refineries in Jamnagar, Gujarat. The launch of 4G phone service Jio and 4G smartphone brand named Reliance LYF were latest feat in his business career.

Dilip Shanghvi

The co-founder of Sun Pharmaceuticals and recipient of the Padma Shri.

Age: 61

Shanghvi was born to Shantilal Shanghvi and Kumud Shanghvi on 1 October, 1955, in Amreli, a small town in Gujarat. He did his schooling from Kolkata and graduated from the University of Calcutta.

Like Mukesh Ambani, Dilip also joined his father’s business. His father had a wholesale generic drugs business in Kolkata. However, Dilip later decided to set up his own drug manufacturing company instead of working as a drug distributor and established Sun Pharmaceutical Industries in 1982 at Vapi, Gujarat. Sun Pharmaceutical became India’s largest and world’s fifth largest drug firm with the acquisition of Ranbaxy in 2015.

Azim Premji

The chairman of Wipro Limited and recipient of the Padma Vibhushan.

Age: 71

Known as the Czar of the Indian IT Industry, Azim was born to Muhammed Hashim Premji on 24 July, 1945, in Mumbai. Like the other two billionaires, Azim also took charge of his father’s legacy, but after the latter’s death in 1966.

Azim was 21 years old when he had to leave his bachelors course at Stanford University to take over his deceased father’s business.

Wipro, which is now the third largest outsourcer in India, was established as Western Indian Vegetable Products Ltd at Maharashtra’s Amalner town in 1945 by Muhammed Hashim. Azim later changed the name of the company, which initially manufactured hydrogenated oil, to Western India Palm Refined Oil Limited where manufacturing of products like bakery fats and baby toiletries also started. However, in 1980s, Azim made a final shift from the industry of soap manufacturing to IT.

Although, the top three billionaires took over the businesses started by their father, they have all been successful in leaving a mark in their respective field.

( Source : Deccan Chronicle. )
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