Baba Ramdev loyalist and Patanjali promoter Balakrishna enters India rich list with $3.8 bn

Baba Ramdev loyalist and Patanjali promoter Balakrishna enters India rich list with $3.8 bn

By Joseph Rai

  • 08 Sep 2016
Baba Ramdev loyalist and Patanjali promoter Balakrishna enters India rich list with $3.8 bn

Acharya Balakrishna, the man behind yoga guru Baba Ramdev's consumer goods empire Patanjali Ayurved, has stormed into the Hurun India Rich List with a wealth of Rs 25,600 crore (around $3.8 billion).

Balakrishna, 44, was ranked 26 among 339 in the list with individuals having Rs 1,600 crore (around $240 million) or more, the Hurun India Rich List 2016 report, which focuses on high-net-worth individuals in China and India, showed.

Patanjali Ayurved has grown almost five times between FY12 and FY15 when top FMCG firms in India such as Hindustan Unilever, Godrej Consumer, Marico, Dabur and Emami grew 30-70%.


"Yoga Acharya’s Patanjali took the market by storm and is eating away market share of other multinational FMCGs. Patanjali registered a turnover of Rs 5,000 crore and expects to hit Rs 10,000 crore in 2017," the report noted.

Mukesh Ambani of diversified conglomerate Reliance Industries Ltd retained the top slot for a fifth year in a row with a wealth of Rs 163,400 crore (around $25 billion).

Ambani was followed by Dilip Sanghvi of India's top drug manufacturer Sun Pharmaceuticals and Pallonji Mistry of Tata Enterprises. While Sanghvi retained the second spot with Rs 121,500 crore (around $18 billion) Mistry rose to the third slot with Rs 110,100 crore (around $16 billion) from his fifth position last year. Cyrus Poonawalla of vaccine maker Serum Institute of India moved up to the fifth place against eleventh last year.


Azim Premji of information technology company Wipro with Rs 7,4700 crore (around $11 billion) is in the sixth position while Uday Kotak climbed to the ninth position backed by a 9% year-on-year increase in the share price Kotak Mahindra Bank in which he holds 33.7%. 

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Among those who went down in ranking were SP Hinduja and family who have interests ranging from automotive to financial services, Shiv Nadar of software company HCL, Lakshmi Niwas Mittal of steel major Arcelor Mittal and Sunil Mittal and family who have interests ranging from telecommunications to financials services.


Young entrepreneurs under 40; richest woman

The average age of the rich list at 61 is same as that of last year with 11 under 40.

Bhavish Aggarwal of cab hailing company Ola is the youngest in the list at 30 with a wealth of Rs 3,000 crore (around $452 million). Binny Bansal, 33, and Sachin Bansal, 35, of e-commerce firm Flipkart were ranked 136 with a wealth of Rs 5,400 crore (around $813 million) each.


Kunal Bahl, 32, of another e-commerce firm Snapdeal had a wealth of Rs 2,300 crore (around $346 million).

Digital wallet firm Paytm founder Vijay Shekhar Sharma's wealth rose by 162% to Rs 7,300 crore (around $1 billion) year-on-year making him the richest entrepreneur under 40.

The other under 40 entrepreneurs in the list include Nilima Motaparti of pharmaceutical company Divis Laboratories with Rs 7,100 crore (around $1 billion) and her brother Divi Satchandra Kiran, also of Divis Labs.


Savitri Jindal, 66, is the richest woman in the list with the fortune of Rs 35,000 crore (around $5.3 billion) that saw her wealth rise by 123%.

"This is backed by the stellar performance of JSW steel, which doubled in value over the past year," said the report.

Mumbai continued to dominate with 30% of the individuals in the list residing there. Delhi came in second with 19% followed by Bengaluru with 8%.

The number of dollar billionaires has increased to 126, up from two last year. The inaugural Hurun India Rich List in 2012 had 59 billionaires.

The average wealth, however, dropped 7% year on year, owing to a lackluster performance of key sectors such as technology, jewellery and trading, the report noted.

“Despite an above average monsoon and a steep 24% wage hike, India Inc fails to cheer the market, resulting in a muted growth in average wealth for 2016. Subdued investors interest in ecommerce and online businesses declined valuations of e-commerce unicorns in 2016 as compared to 2015,” said Anas Rahman Junaid, managing director and chief researcher, Hurun Report India.

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