Global Icon – Ratan Tata

U.S. Embassy New Delhi, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons



Ratan Tata, Indian Industrialist



Ratan Tata is an Indian businessman who became chairman (in 1991–2012, and in 2016–2017) of the Tatá Group a company headquartered in Mumbai (born 28th of December, 1937, Bombay [ now Mumbai ], India). He was a member of the influential Indian family in business and philanthropy  and earned a B.S, in architecture from Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. (1962) before he returned to India .

In 1971 he was appointed Director in Charge of one of the companies National Radio & Electronics Ltd, and has a variety of associations under Tata Corporation businesses. A decade later he was elected President of Tata Motors, and in 1991 his brother, J.R.D. Tata, was succeeded by him as chairman of Tata.

With his leadership, Tata pursued an aggressive expansion of the conglomerate and centered more and more on the globalization of its businesses. The group bought $431.3 million of the London-based Tetley Tea in 2000, and $102 million for the South Korea Daewoo Motors truck manufacturing business in 2004. In 2007, when Tata Steel purchased the giant Anglo-Dutch steel maker Corus Group for $11,3 billion, it achieved the largest company acquisition in the Indian market.

Tata oversaw the acquisition from the Ford Motor Company of the prestigious British car brands Jaguar and Land Rover in 2008. The 2,3 billion dollars deal marked the Indian car company’s largest takeover. The next year, Tata Nano, a lightweight, rear-enginested, pod-shaped vehicle with a price beginning of about $2,000 or 100,000 Indian rupees, was introduced by the company. Even though the popular People’s Car could be up to five people and, in the words of Tata, would provide millions of mid- to lower-income customers, both in India and abroad with a secure, accessible and all-weather transport system, while it was only slightly longer than ten feet (3 meters) and nearly 5 feet (1.5 meters) high.

As Chairman of the Tata Group he resigned in December 2012 succeeded by Cyrus Mistry . He acted as interim president shortly after Cyrus Mistry resigned in October 2016. When Natarajan Chandrasekaran was appointed chairman of the Tata Group, Tata returned to retirement in January 2017  and continues to head its charitable trusts.

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