7 Fascinating Facts You Didn’t Know About Ratan Tata

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The chairman emeritus of Tata Group, the largest conglomerate in India, Ratan Tata sits at the head of a $100 billion company that includes everything from salt to software. Tata has spent more than five decades building this massive empire, and he’s seen his fair share of ups and downs along the way. From humble beginnings to being named Forbes’ fifth richest man in the world, Ratan Tata has certainly lived an interesting life. Let’s take a look at some of the most fascinating facts about this self-made billionaire.

He was an average student.

Ratan Tata was born on December 28, 1937, in Mumbai and was raised by his grandfather who encouraged him to study. He did well in school, but he wasn’t a star student; he didn’t shine in any particular subjects. In fact, his grades were average all around. He applied to Harvard at the age of 16 and was denied admission because of his lack of interest in any specific field. He then went to the India Institute of Technology where he studied metallurgy and design engineering. Upon graduation from IIT, Tata joined Jamshedji Tata as a millwright apprentice.

He Started His Career at Air India

Ratan Tata’s first job was at Air India, where he worked as a secretary. His rise to success is attributed to his humble beginnings. He started his career at Air India and worked his way up from an office boy to the Chairman of the Board. He has been listed in Forbes Magazine’s list of billionaires for eight years running. He became chairman emeritus on the board of directors on 24th October 2012.

Many People Thought He Would Fail

Ratan Tata took over as the chairman of India’s largest industrial conglomerate, the Tata Group, in 1991. Many people at the time thought he would fail because he did not have a business background but instead studied architecture and engineering. In fact, at one point during his tenure as chairman of the group that owns Tetley Tea, Mr Tata had to take a crash course on how to make tea and visited factories across India to understand what was going wrong with his company.

He Turned Around Maruti Suzuki

Ratan Tata was born in 1937 in the city of Mumbai, India. He is the chairman of Tata Group, one of India’s largest conglomerates. At a young age, he was sent to England to attend school and study engineering at University College London. Ratan graduated in 1961 with a degree in mechanical engineering and then joined his father’s company, which manufactured steel tubing for cars.

In 1991, Ratan took over as chairman after his predecessor died unexpectedly. Under his leadership, Maruti Suzuki grew into the third-largest car manufacturer in India. After retiring from this position in 2012, Ratan became chairman emeritus and focused on philanthropy.

His Company Is Now Worth Over $100 Billion

Ratan Tata is a name you might not be familiar with, but he’s the chairman of India’s second-largest company, the Indian conglomerate Tata Group. Starting out as a tea taster for then British-owned Taj Hotels in 1962, Mr Tata has led the company to its current standing as one of the world’s most diversified business conglomerates. With over 140 companies operating in more than 100 countries and about 230,000 employees, it is worth more than $100 billion.

He Invested in a Soccer Team

Ratan Tata invested in a soccer team that competes in the Indian Super League, which is one of the top soccer leagues in Asia. The team is called Jamshedpur FC and it plays at the iconic JRD Athletic Stadium in Jamshedpur, India. He’s on Forbes World’s Billionaires List: Mr Tata has been on Forbes’ list of billionaires since 2006 and he has never been off the list. He Is an Accomplished Pilot: In his free time, Mr Tata enjoys flying aeroplanes for hobby reasons. His Pet Name for Ex-Wife Anita Is Toots: When he was interviewed by CNBC in 2011, Mr Tata was asked what his pet name for ex-wife Anita is and he said Toots.

His Inspiration Came from His Mother

When Ratan Tata was asked what his inspiration was, he replied that it came from the example set by his mother. He said: My mother is the most important person in my life. She has been an extraordinary woman who gave up her own life to raise us. His mother ran a tight household and insisted on education for all of her children. Today, she lives with the family in Mumbai, where she is cared for by two daughters-in-law and a son’s wife. Ratan does not discuss work at home. But when his daughter first moved back to India after graduating college, she told him: Dad, I think you need a CEO now.

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Where the wild things roam, there my stories are born. Blogger. Explorer. Forever curious.

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