Top 10 richest entrepreneurs in India

In a country as vast and diverse as India, it is no surprise that there are many successful entrepreneurs, industrialists, and business tycoons. India has an incredible number of billionaires right now; here are the inspiring stories of the top 10 richest people in India that will show you that anything is possible with hard work and determination!

1. Gautam Adani 

Self-made, first-generation entrepreneur Gautam Shantilal Adani is the chairman and founder of the Indian multinational conglomerate Adani Group. Billionaire, industrialist, and philanthropist Adani have a net worth of $131.2B (according to Forbes, 2022). Of course, his net worth is only slightly inferior to that of the 3rd richest man in the world, Bernard Arnault.

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Gautam Adani was born on 24 June 1962 in a Gujarati Jain family to Shantilal and Shantaben Adani in Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He has seven siblings.  

Education of Gautam Adani 

He studied with Sheth C.N. Vidyalaya School in Ahmedabad and entered the Faculty of Commerce of the University of Gujrat but dropped out in the 2nd year. This richest man is considered one of the 100 most prominent business people in the world today, expanding trade transportation and transport infrastructure.

Career of Gautam Adani

Gautam Adani was always captivated by business and wanted to do his one, so he moved to Mumbai in his teenage years and worked as a diamond sorter for Mahendra Brothers. Gautam worked there for around two to three years before setting up his diamond brokerage firm at Zaveri Bazaar, Mumbai.

He then began importing primary polymers for small-scale industries and established Adani Exports, now known as Adani Enterprises. The company trades in agriculture, power commodities, metals, and textiles and has become the most significant private multi-port operator. 

As Gautam Adani says: “Either you sit on the pile of cash, or you continue to grow”. It proved to be 100%  true as he joined Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk in the exclusive billionaire’s club and became the 4th wealthiest person in the world. And if you ask who is the richest man in India, you will also see the name Gautam Adani.

2. Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani

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Mukesh Ambani is an Indian business magnate and Chairman and Managing Director of the Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries Limited (RIL). Не holds the position of India’s and Asia’s richest man in 2022, with a net worth of $85.9B (according to Forbes, 2022). Thus, Mukesh’s net worth makes him one of the top 10 billionaires in the world and trillionaires when counted in Indian rupees.

Mukesh Ambani was one of four children of the Indian business tycoon Dhirubhai and Kokilaben Ambani. He was born on April 19, 1957, in Aden, Yemen. But in 1958, his family returned permanently to the Bhuleshwar area in Bombay (Mumbai), India. He has younger siblings, Anil Ambani, Nina Bhadrashyam Kothari, and Deepti Salganonkar.

Education of Mukesh Ambani 

Ambani accomplished his primary education at the Hill Grange High School, Mumbai, and his higher school education at St. Xavier’s College, Mumbai. Later Mukesh acknowledged a bachelor’s degree in chemical engineering from the University of Mumbai, following a master’s degree in business administration from Stanford University. But he soon decided to drop out as his father called him back to India to take over the family business.

Career of Mukesh Ambani  

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Mukesh did not immediately get into the list of the richest persons in India. In 1981, he began helping his father, Dhirubhai Ambani, manage their family business, Reliance Industries Limited. He worked to diversify the company, focusing on a wide variety of areas: communications, infrastructure, petrochemicals, oil refining, polyester fiber production, and gas and oil production. Mukesh has also significantly turned RIL’s subsidiaries into market leaders in their respective fields.

In 2016, Mukesh Ambani set foot into India’s telecom industry by launching Jio; cheap mobile data plans brought quick success. Jio is now the most successful telecom company with the most users in India.

These businesses have contributed to Mukesh Ambani’s wealth, and his net worth is estimated at around $90 billion, placing him in second place in the top 10 richest people in India.

3. Cyrus S. Poonawalla 

Cyrus Poonawalla ranks among the top 100 richest people in India and the world. He is famously known as the Vaccine King of India, the third richest person in India has a net worth of $22.3B (according to Forbes, 2022). Cyrus Poonawalla is an Indian billionaire businessman, entrepreneur, and chairman of the Poonawalla Group. The conglomerate includes the Serum Institute of India, an Indian biotechnology company that produces pediatric vaccines. It is considered one of the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers in the number of doses.

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Cyrus Poonawalla was born on 11 May 1941 to Soli A. Poonawalla and Gool Poonawalla, in a family from Pune whose ancient business was horse racing, and they owned Poonawalla Stud Farms. 

Education of Cyrus Poonawalla 

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Dr. Cyrus Punavalla completed his studies at the Bishops’ School in Pune and graduated from the Brihan Maharashtra College of Commerce (BMCC). He received his Ph.D. from the University of Pune for his thesis on “Improved Technology in the Manufacture of Specific Anti-toxins and its Socio-Economic Impact on the Society”. 

Career of Cyrus Poonawalla 

Poonawalla founded the Serum Institute of India and launched the first therapeutic anti-tetanus serum. His company also introduced the DTP vaccine, which is well known to safeguard children from diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis, and the creation of an anti-snake venom serum. 

The World Health Organization recognised the Serum Institute of India. They began to supply vaccines to the UN Agencies like UNICEF (United Nations Children’s Fund)  and PAHO Pan American Health Organization and started exporting them to over 100  countries worldwide. Today, it has developed into one of India’s most significant biotech companies and is among the world’s largest vaccine manufacturers. 

Apart from vaccines, Poonawalla has compelling connections to the horseracing and breeding industry. He was once elected vice chairman of the Asian Racing Federation and held various reputable posts in the horseracing field.

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He is a true visionary who has spent decades of his life nurturing and sharing the values of excellence, innovation, and sustainability alongside social responsibilities and philanthropy. This year, Dr. Cyrus Poonawalla has been recognised for his immense work in saving the lives of more than 30  million, primarily underprivileged children, across the globe since he founded the institution in 1966.

His excellent business management has become a ticket to the top of the list of most influential people, although Cyrus Poonawalla is not the richest person in India.

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4. Shiv Nadar 

Shiv Nadar was born on 14th July 1945 to Sivasubramaniya and Vamasundari Devi in Tiruchendur, Tamil Nadu, India. He is the founder and honorary chairman of IT company HCL Technologies Limited, the Indian billionaire industrialist and philanthropist with a net worth of over $22.2B (according to Forbes, 2022). And although he is not in the top 10 richest people in the world, he is one of the wealthiest persons in India.

Education of Shiv Nadar 

Shiv Nadar accomplished his schooling at various schools in Tamil Nadu. Nadar earned his pre-university degree from the American College, Madurai, and his bachelor’s degree in Electrical and  Electronics Engineering from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore. 

Career of Shiv Nadar 

Shiv Nadar inaugurated his career at a Pune-based company, Walchand Group’s Cooper Engineering. But he soon gave it up to begin his venture in partnerships with several friends and colleagues. 

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The company was called Microcomp and focused on selling teledigital calculators in India. HCL was founded in 1976 and entered the international market in 1980 by opening Far East Computers in Singapore. The company accomplished sales worth Rs.10,00,000 in its first year solely. As a result, Shiv Nadar became an Indian IT pioneer and was listed as the top richest person in India.

5. Radhakishan Shivkishan Damani 

Radhakishan Damani, famously known as Mr. White and White (because he always wears a white shirt and white frousers), is the 5th richest person in India. RK Damani is one of India’s most celebrated entrepreneurs, stock market brokers, investors, and the founder of the country’s third-largest mega-retail store chain, DMart.

Radhakishan Damani was born on 15 March 1954 to Shivkishanji Damani of the Marwari family from Bikaner, Rajasthan. His father was a stockbroker on Dalal Street and his brother, Gopikishan Damani, is a stock trader and investor. Damani is in the club of the top richest man in India, with a net worth of his company of $20B (according to Forbes, 2022). 

Education of Radhakishan Damani  

RK Damani does not appraise himself to be a highly educated person. He studied commerce at the  University of Mumbai before dropping out in the second year.  

Career of Radhakishan Damani 

Radhakishan began his career as a merchant in the line of ball bearings. Unfortunately, the untimely death of Radhakishan’s father led him to step into the stock market. 

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But over time, he stopped his business and joined his brother in the stock exchange business without having sufficient knowledge wich he did. Consequently, his first step was to study the workings of the market. Faced with a few initial losses, he decided to make a long-term investment and was eventually successful.

He then founded the DMart supermarket chain, adopting strategies unique to the Indian retail market. After that, most retail chains leased their stores to him, and Dmart became the owner of various outlets throughout India. While other retail players in the market were expanding into different categories, including electronics and fashion, DMart focused on its core food and grocery line.

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6. Savitri Jindal

Savitri Jindal is the 6th richest person in India on our list. She is the Honorary Chairman of Jindal Steel & Power Limited, stepped out of the house’s shadows, and assumed control of a thriving business empire. Savitri Jindal is one of the 10 richest people in India, with a net worth of $15.6B (according to Forbes, 2022). 

Indian tennis player Sania Mirza walks the ramp displaying an outfit by designers Shantanu and Nikhil during the Aamby Valley India Bridal Fashion Week (IBFW) 2013, in Mumbai on December 2, 2013. (Photo: IANS)

Education of Savitri Jindal  

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She was born on March 20, 1950, in Tinsukia, Assam, India. She grew up in Assam, so she was educated there and didn’t go to college. The richest businesswoman in India believes that “education cannot be an obstacle to becoming a successful businessman”.

Career of Savitri Jindal 

She was married to Om Prakash Jindal in 1970. He established the Jindal group. Savitri appeared for the Hisar Constituency as a minister in the Haryana Vidhan Sabha. After her husband’s death, she accepted the role of Chairperson of the Jindal group.

Savitri Jindal is a billionaire politician with an active career in politics. She has formerly served as a minister in Bhupinder Singh’s government in  Haryana and is currently a member of the Indian National Congress.

Savitri Jindal had been a homemaker all her life and had once said in an interview: “We remain in charge of the house while the men take care of everything outside”. Nevertheless, she changed over into an entrepreneur without a glitch and created history by becoming the richest woman in India.

7. Sunil Bharti Mittal 

The owner of the world’s largest telecommunications company, Sunil Mittal, is the 7th richest person in India, with a net worth of $15B (according to Forbes, 2022). 

The Indian billionaire tycoon, philanthropist, founder, and chairman of Bharti Enterprises has diverse interests in education, insurance, hospitality, real estate, telecommunications, shopping malls, agriculture, and food, among other businesses.

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Mittal was born on 23rd October 1957 to an esteemed politician Sat Paul Mittal in an Aggarwal family of Ludhiana, Punjab, India.  

Education of Sunil Mittal 

Sunil Mittal studied at the Wynberg Allen School of Mussoorie and later moved to Scindia School at  Gwalior. After that, he graduated from Panjab University with a Bachelor of Arts and Science.

Career of Sunil Mittal 

Mittal is an ambitious and businesslike man who started his career importing scrap metal and bicycle parts and then built a small stainless steel sheet project. He moved to Mumbai to pursue his business dreams, where he established a small trade in stainless steel sheets. This experience taught him the potential for success in the industry as he had a knack for selling goods and persuading people.

Subsequently, he started manufacturing mobile phones in India, got in touch with Germany’s Siemens AG, and started manufacturing facsimile machines, cordless phones, etc. His firm became the first telecommunications company to exceed 2 million mobile subscribers. Bharti Airtel is one of the largest telecommunications companies in the world.

8. Kumar Mangalam Birla 

Billionaire tycoon Kumar Birla, chairman of MNC and Aditya Birla Group, is the 8th richest person in India, with a net worth of $14.8B (according to Forbes, 2022). 

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In addition, Kumar Birla is the rector of the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS) and the BITS School of Management (BITSoM). He is Chairman of IIM Ahmedabad, IIT Delhi, and Chairman of the Rhodes India Scholarship Committee for Oxford University.

He was born on June 14, 1967, to Aditya Vikram and Rajashri Birla in a Marwari business family spending most of his childhood in Mumbai and Kolkata. 

Education of Kumar Birla 

After completing his school education, he acknowledged his B.Com degree from the University of Bombay. After that, he became a Chartered Accountant from the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India and went abroad for further studies accomplishing his MBA from London Business School, UK.

Career of Kumar Birla 

Kumar took over as Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group of Companies following the sudden death of his father. He integrated the company’s positions into existing business lines and expanded them into telecommunications, software, BPO, and other areas. Its multinational business operations span over 40 countries on six continents. 

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One of his most remarkable works is the radical change he made as chairman of the Aditya Birla Group. He revolutionized the entire business strategy, professionalized the whole group, and contributed to the organization’s growth over the years. As a philanthropist, he is actively involved in charitable work that mainly affects the quality of life of the weaker sections of society in countless countries worldwide, including India, Thailand, and Egypt.

9. Lakshmi Narayan Mittal 

The undisputed king of steel, Lakshmi Narayan Mittal is the 9th richest man in India and one of the wealthiest men around the globe. With a swaying fortune and king-sized ambitions to make his company a true global blockbuster. 

He is an active philanthropist with a net worth of $14.4B (according to Forbes, 2022). Lakshmi Mittal was born on 15 June 1950 in a Baniya family in Sadulpur, Rajasthan. 

The shrewd businessman was born without basic amenities like electricity, water, etc. So his family moved to Calcutta in West Bengal, where his father, Mohan Lal Mittal, raised a small steel plant. 

Education of Lakshmi Mittal 

Mittal accomplished his primary school in a Hindi medium school and graduated from St. Xavier’s College in Calcutta with a Bachelor of Commerce degree in Business and Accounting. 

Career of Lakshmi Mittal  

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Lakshmi Mittal kickstarted his career working in the family’s steelmaking business in India; later, he laid his first stone by establishing the international business division picking up a run-down plant in Indonesia. Beginning with Ispat Indo in Indonesia, Mittal trans-figured the average business of his family into a global steel giant, spreading across 14 countries and employing more than 150,000  people for work. He edged forward, acquiring various firms worldwide, proving every risk worth its effort.

The shrewd businessman’s list of acquisitions is a lengthy catalog, including Sircasta, Mexico’s third largest steel producer, a Steel Blast furnace plant owned by the state of Kazakhastan, a Steel plant in Europe, Germany.

His determination and thoughtful management strategy have made man one of the top 10 richest people in India.

10. Uday Kotak 

The Indian billionaire “nationalist” banker Uday Kotak is the founder, CEO, Executive Vice Chairman, and Managing Director of an Indian private sector bank, Kotak Mahindra Bank. He is the 10th richest man in India, with a net worth of $13.8B (according to Forbes, 2022). 

Uday Kotak was born on 15 March 1959 in an upper-middle-class Gujarati Lohana joint family living in Mumbai. They were initially in the cotton and other agricultural commodities trading business. His father, Ramesh Kotak, returned to India from Karachi after Partition. 

Education of Uday Kotak 

Kotak accomplished his schooling at Hindi Vidya Bhavan. His love of mathematics drove Uday’s career choice. He earned a bachelor’s degree from Sydenham College and completed a postgraduate degree in management studies in 1982 from Jamnalal Bajaj Institute of Management Studies.

Career of Uday Kotak 

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After accomplishing his MBA, Kotak was all set to join Hindustan Unilever, an Indian subsidiary of the  MNC called FMCG Company. He later decided to try his hand at entrepreneurship; Uday established his small financial agency in the Navsari building and diversified his financial advisory business into various areas of financial services: investment banking, reconstruction, mutual funds, stockbroking, bills discounting, life insurance, car finance,  commercial banking, and more. 

He modified Kotak Mahindra Finance Limited into Kotak Bank, which came up to be the first Indian non-banking finance company. It was given a banking license from the Reserve Bank of India -RBI. The bank presently has the second-highest price-to-book ratio among mega-international banks.

His genius and ability to handle finances allowed a person to enter the list of the top 10 richest men in India in 2022.

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