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July 7, 2002 | 0620 IST
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The Ambani Achievements

Reliance Group Chairman Dhirubhai Ambani passed away at the Breach Candy Hospital in Mumbai on Saturday night. Here's a brief resume of India's 'Businessman of the Century.'

Name: Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani

Status: Founder and Chairman of Reliance Group

Date of birth: December 28, 1932

Place of Birth: Chorwad village in Saurashtra, Gujarat

Father's name: Hirachand Govardhandas Ambani '

Mother's name: Jamunaben Hirachand Ambani

Marital Status: Married to Kokilaben. Four children -- sons Mukesh and Anil, daughters Dipti Salgaonkar, living in Goa, and Nina Kothari, living in Chennai.

Business Address: Maker Chambers IV, 222, Nariman Point, Mumbai 400 021

Names of major companies: Reliance Industries Ltd, Reliance Petroleum Ltd Directorships, Chairmanships: Reliance Industries Ltd, Reliance Petroleum Ltd.

Career: At the age of 17, Dhirubhai went to Aden (now in Yemen) and worked for 'A Besse and Co Ltd,' the sole distributors of Shell products.

Returned to Mumbai in 1958 and started his first company - Reliance Commercial Corp, a commodity trading and exports house.

Started textile mill in Naroda in Ahmedabad in 1966.

In 1975, a technical team of the World Bank certified that the Reliance textile plant was 'excellent' by developed country standards.

The company went public in 1997.

The group is credited with a number of financial innovations in the Indian capital market.

Today the group has the largest family of shareholders in the world.

With an investment of Rs 360 billion in petroleum refining, petrochemicals, power generation, telecommunication services and a port terminal in a three-year time frame, the late Dhirubhai Ambani had steered the Group to its current status as India's leading textiles-petrochemicals-telecommunications player.

Reliance Group is India's largest business house with total revenues of over Rs 600 billion, cash flow of Rs 70 billion, net profit of Rs 45 billion and exports of Rs 93.70 billion.

With total assets of Rs 550 billion, the group's activities span petrochemicals, synthetic fibres, fibre intermediaries, textiles, oil and gas, financial services, refining and marketing, power, insurance, telecom and infocom initiatives.

Reliance emerged as India's most admired business house in a Taylor Nelson Sofres-Mode (TSN-Mode) survey for 2001 conducted by Business Barons magazine.


  • Conferred the lifetime achievement award by India HRD Congress in February 2002. Conferred The Economic Times award for corporate excellence for lifetime achievement in August 2001. Thrice rated as 'India's Most Admired CEO' in the Business Barons-Taylor Nelson Sofres-Mode survey in June 2001, 2000 and 1999.
  • Felicitated by the Brihamumbai Municipal Corporation, the biggest civic body of the country, with a citation and address followed by civic reception in December 2002.
  • Conferred the 'Man of the Century' award by Chemtech Foundation and chemical engineering world in recognition of his outstanding contribution to the growth and development of the chemical industry in India, in November 2000.
  • Conferred the 'Indian Entrepreneur of the 20th century' award by FICCI for his meticulous scripting of one of the most remarkable stories of business endeavours, in March 2000.
  • Thrice nominated as one of the 'Power 50-The Most Powerful People in Asia' by Asia Week magazine in 2000, 1998 and 1996.
  • Voted as the 'Most Admired Indian of the Millennium' in the field of business and economics' in 'Legends- a celebration of Excellence' poll audited by Ernst and Young for Zee network in January 2000.
  • Voted as 'Creator of Wealth of the Century' in 'The Times of India' poll in January 2000.
  • Chosen as one of three 'makers of equity' by 'India Today' in their special millennium issue entitled '100 people who shaped India in the 20th Century' in January 2000.
  • Chosen by the Indian Merchants Chamber as 'an outstanding visionary of the 20th century' for his achievements and contribution to the development of industry and capital markets in India, in December 1999.
  • Voted as 'Indian Businessman of the Century' in Business Barons Global Multimedia poll December 1999.
  • Amongst the 'Power 50- India's 50 most powerful decision maker in politics, business and finance' in Business Barons in August 1999.
  • Declared 'Most admired Indian business leader' by The Times of India, poll in July 1999.
  • The only Indian industrialist in the 'Business Hall of Fame' in Asia Week in October 1998.
  • Awarded the Dean's medal by the Wharton School, University of Pennslyvania, for setting an outstanding example of leadership, in June 1998.
  • Chosen as 'Star of Asia' by Business Week, USA in June 1998.
  • Business Barons placed Ambani on its list of India's 25 Most influential business and financial leaders, in June 1998.
  • Awarded the Companion Membership of Textile Institute, UK, a membership which is limited to 50 living members, who have substantially advanced the general interests of industries based in fibres, in 1994.
  • Chosen 'Businessman of the year 1993' by Business India, in January 1994.


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