Electrical consumer products maker Havells’ chairman Qimat Rai Gupta passes away

Qimat Rai Gupta, chairman of electrical goods maker Havells India Ltd, passed away on Friday, the company informed on Friday.

Seventy-seven-year-old Gupta, a first generation entrepreneur, along with his son Anil Gupta, who has been leading the operations of the company for the past few years, transformed Havells from a small sized switchgear maker into a global company with operations in 51 countries.

The firm, which acquired Havells brand (then a small name) in 1971, today produces various consumer home appliances besides lighting products in additional to electrical products such as switchgears, cables and more. Havells has a market cap of over Rs 7,000 crore.

Gupta's big moment came in 2007 when Havells acquired Europe headquartered Sylvania Lighting. Havells got laden with a sinking ship with Sylvania soon after the acquisition but the management went on to restructure the firm to make a success out of it. This made it one of the handful of Indian mid-size firms to see through a successful integration of the large size overseas acquisition, to date.

Havells also went on to attract private equity investor Warburg Pincus, which committed $110 million to the firm in October 2007, at the peak of the previous bull run. In a highly unusual development, and arguably the first such known instance, Warburg Pincus went on convert warrants into equity at a premium of six times the market price of the company, when it could have well walked out of bringing in the remaining amount. Last year the PE firm exited Havells making 2.5x on its investment bet.

Gupta made it to the Forbes' billionaire list for the first time this year. He was ranked India's 48th richest man with a net worth of $2 billion as of September 2014.

(Edited by Joby Puthuparampil Johnson)

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