Ratan Tata Biography

Ratan Tata Biography

1 . Biography

Ratan Naval Tata was born on December 28, 1937, in Surat. He is the present Chairman of the Tata Group, Indias largest conglomerate founded by Jamshedji Tata and consolidated and expanded by later generations of his family. Tata was born into the wealthy and famous Tata family of Mumbai. He was born to Soonoo and Naval Hormusji Tata. Ratan is the great grandson of Tata group founder Jamshedji Tata.

Ratans childhood was troubled, his parents separating in the mid 1940s, when he was about seven and his younger brother Jimmy was five. He was schooled at the Campion School, Mumbai and graduated from Cornell University in 1962 with a degree in Architecture and Structural Engineering. Ratan Tata holds a B.Sc. (Architecture) degree with structural engineering from Cornell University, USA and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School, USA. He joined the Tata Group in December 1962, after turning down a job with IBM on the advice of JRD Tata.

He was first sent to Jamshedpur to work at Tata Steel. Ratan Tata, a shy man, rarely features in the society glossies, has lived for years in a book crammed, dog filled bachelor flat in Mumbais Colaba district. Ratan Tata has his own capital in Tata Sons., the holding company of the group. Though his share is just about 1%, his personal holding is valued at US$ 1 Billion. If all the value of this is added his Net Worth is estimated at around US$ 50 Billion, making Ratan N. Tata one of the richest people in the world. JRD Tata with his successor Ratan Tata in 1971, Ratan was appointed the Director in Charge of the National Radio & Electronics Company Limited (Nelco), a company that was in dire financial difficulty. Ratan suggested that the company invest in developing high technology products, rather than in consumer electronics. In 1991, he took over as group chairman from J.R.D. Tata, pushing out the old guard and ushering in younger managers. Since then, he has been instrumental in reshaping the fortunes of the Tata Group, which today has the largest market capitalization of any business house on the Indian Stock Market. On March 26, 2008, Tata Motors, under Ratan Tata, bought Jaguar & Land Rover from Ford Motor Company. The two iconic British brands, Jaguar and Land Rover, were acquired for $2.3 billion. Ratan Tatas dream was to manufacture a car costing Rs 100,000. He realized his dream by launching Nano in New Delhi Auto Expo on January 10, 2008.

2 . Family

Ratan Tata was born to Naval Tata and Soonoo Commisariat and has a younger brother Jimmy Tata. Ratans father, Naval Tata was remarried to Simone Dunoyer, after his divorce and had one son, Noel Tata, from his second wife. Ratans father was an adopted son of Sir Ratan Tata.

3 . Early life

Ratan Tata is the son of Naval Tata, who had been adopted from the family of a distant relative by Navajbai Tata after the death of her husband, Ratanji Tata. Ratan Tatas parents Naval and Sonoo separated in the mid 1940s when Ratan was ten and his younger brother, Jimmy, was seven years old. Both he and his brother were raised by their grandmother Navajbai Tata.Ratan also has a step brother Noel Tata from Naval Tatas second marriage to Simone Tata.Ratan began his schooling in Mumbai at the Campion School and finished his secondary education at the Cathedral and John Connon School.He completed his B.S. in architecture with structural engineering from Cornell University in 1962, and the Advanced Management Program from Harvard Business School in 1975.Tata is a member of the Alpha Sigma Phi fraternity.

4 . Career

Tata began his career in the Tata group in 1960. He initially started on the shop floor of Tata Steel, shovelling limestone and handling the blast furnace.In 1991, J. R. D. Tata stepped down as Chairman of Tata Sons, naming Ratan as his successor.Under his stewardship, Tata Tea acquired Tetley, Tata Motors acquired Jaguar Land Rover and Tata Steel acquired Corus, which have turned Tata from a largely India centric company into a global business, with 65% revenues coming from abroad. He was instrumental in the development of Tata Nano, largely dubbed as the worlds cheapest passenger car.Ratan Tata retired from all executive responsibility in the Tata group on 28 December 2012 which is also his 75th birthday and he was succeeded by Cyrus Mistry, the 44 year old son of Pallonji Mistry and managing director of Shapoorji Pallonji Group.

5 . Board Memberships and Affiliations

He is currently the chairman Emeritus of Tata Sons. He continues to serve as the chairman of the main two Tata trusts Sir Dorabji Tata Trust and Sir Ratan Tata Trust and their allied Trusts, which together hold 66% of shares in the group holding company Tata Sons.Ratan Tata has served in various capacities in organisations in India and abroad. He is a member of the Prime Ministers Council on Trade and Industry and the National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council. He is on the jury panel of Pritzker Architecture Prize. considered to be one of the worlds premier architecture prizes.Ratan Tata is a director on the boards of Alcoa Inc., Mondelez International and Board of Governors of the East West Center. He is also a member of the Board of Trustees of University of Southern California, Harvard Business School Board of Deans Advisors, X Prize and Cornell University.

6 . Growing Up

Ratan N. Tata has been brought up in an old and well known business family. He belongs to a prominent Parsi family. He has not faced any such financial issues since his family had been successful businessmen since the British rule in India. Ratans father, Naval Tata was adopted by Sir Ratan Tata. He was brought up by his grandmother, Lady Navajbai.Ratan N. Tata is a highly educated businessman. He holds a Bachelors degree in Architecture from the Cornell University, USA, and has pursued and Advanced Management Program from the Harvard Business School, USA. It was in 1962 that he joined his family business; the Tata Group.

7 . Ideal Beginning

Ratan N. Tata, after completing his higher studies returned to India and turned down a job at IBM on JRD Tatas advice and joined the Tata Group in 1962, for which he was sent to Jamshedpur to work on the shop floor at Tata Steel.In 1971, he was appointed as the Director of National Radio and Electronics, which was in a bad state of 40% losses and only 2% of consumer market share. But as soon as Ratan N. Tata joined the company he gave its statistics an upward turn, he took the company from 2% of market share to 25%. National Emergency was declared, which posed great problems such as, weak economy and labour shortage and NELCO was nearing collapse again.

JRD Tata soon declared Ratan Tata his successor in 1981 and Ratan had to face criticism since people believed that hes not experienced enough to handle a business of the scale that of like the Tata Industries. After ten years of his entry into the Tata Industries, he was appointed the Chairman of the Tata Group. After Ratans appointment, The Tata Group reached absolutely new heights which had never been experienced by this group earlier. Under his direction, the company went through several different entrepreneurial ventures.The conversion of the corporate commonwealth of different Tata affiliated company into one cohesive company, the acquisition of Tetley, Jaguar Land Rover and Corus, which turned Tata from a major India Centric company to a global business name, all this is credited to Ratan N. Tata. His major releases have been Indica and Nano in India. Today, Tata Groups 65% of the revenue comes from abroad. After the liberalization of controls in the 1990s, the Tata Group of Companies achieved great success, which again is credited to Ratan N. Tata.

8 . Conjugal Relationship

Ratan N. Tata is 73 years old, unmarried and has been in news regarding several of his relationships. But the big question is who would eventually succeed Ratan N Tata. Media has been talking about his strive for finding an appropriate successor.

9 . Man of Substance

Ratan Tata serves the Indian organizations in senior capacities, for example, he is the member of the Prime Ministers Council on Trade an Industry. He is also on the advisory board of the RANDs center for Asia Pacific Policy.Ratan N. Tata is also an active participant in the Indias AIDS initiative program.Ratan Tata has a long list of foreign affiliations as well, such as, the membership of the international advisory board of the Mitsubishi Cooperation, the American International Group, JP Morgan Chase and Booze Allen Hamilton.As per the 2011report his Net Worth is US$970 million. He is not on the Forbes list of Indian Billionaires because about 65.8% of his share is held by charitable trusts.

10 . Honorary distinctions

Legend in Leadership Award from the Yale.Honorary Citizenship of Singapore.Businessman of the Decade Award by the Federation of Indo Israeli Chambers of Commerce in 2010.Carnegie Medal of Philanthropy, on behalf of the Tata Family.Ratan N. Tata has been also honored by the Government of India with the second highest civilian award, The Padma Vibhooshan, in 2008.

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