Ajay Piramal’s missed decade

The speed at which Piramal Enterprises grew its real estate loan book would put a SoftBank-funded startup to shame. It’s time for a reset.

Ajay Piramal is no ordinary businessman. Starting in the late 1980s, with a mere Rs 6 crore in capital, he built a significant pharmaceuticals business which he sold for over Rs 17,000 crore, a little over two decades later. In dollar terms, that’s going from about $4-5 million (at 1988 exchange rates) to $3.7 billion (at 2010 rates). In doing so, Piramal created a precedent that most Indian businessmen can only dream of.

Rs 1,000 invested in his company in 1988 would have been worth Rs 29 lakh when he sold the pharma business to US-based Abbott Laboratories in 2010, …


T Surendar

Surendar helps lead the newsroom at The Morning Context as executive editor. Over the years, Surendar has worked in industries from pharmaceuticals to diamonds, as well as a stint as an equity analyst. In his long career as a business journalist, he has led teams at The Times of India, India Today and Fortune India. He was part of the founding team at Forbes India and interned at and published in The Times, London.

Executive Editor