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The Most Famous


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This page contains a list of the greatest Indian Businesspeople. The pantheon dataset contains 601 Businesspeople, 21 of which were born in India. This makes India the birth place of the 8th most number of Businesspeople behind Russia and China.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Indian Businesspeople of all time. This list of famous Indian Businesspeople is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Indian Businesspeople.

Photo of Lakshmi Mittal

1. Lakshmi Mittal (1950 - )

With an HPI of 57.23, Lakshmi Mittal is the most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 50 different languages on wikipedia.

Lakshmi Niwas Mittal (Hindi: [ˈləkʃmi nɪˈʋaːs ˈmɪtːəl] (listen); born 15 June 1950) is an Indian steel magnate, based in the United Kingdom. He is the Executive Chairman of ArcelorMittal, the world's second largest steelmaking company, as well as chairman of stainless steel manufacturer Aperam. Mittal owns 38% of ArcelorMittal and holds a 3% stake in EFL Championship side Queens Park Rangers.In 2005, Forbes ranked Mittal as the third-richest person in the world, making him the first Indian citizen to be ranked in the top ten in the publication's annual list of the world's richest people. He was ranked the sixth-richest person in the world by Forbes in 2011, but dropped to 82nd place in March 2015. He is also the "57th-most powerful person" of the 72 individuals named in Forbes' "Most Powerful People" list for 2015. His daughter Vanisha Mittal's wedding was the second-most expensive in recorded history.Mittal has been a member of the board of directors of Goldman Sachs since 2008. He sits on the World Steel Association's executive committee, and is a member of the Global CEO Council of the Chinese People's Association for Friendship with Foreign Countries, the Foreign Investment Council in Kazakhstan, the World Economic Forum's International Business Council, and the European Round Table of Industrialists. He is also a member of the board of trustees of the Cleveland Clinic.In 2005, The Sunday Times named him "Business Person of 2006", the Financial Times named him "Person of the Year", and Time magazine named him "International Newsmaker of the Year 2006". In 2007, Time magazine included him in their "Time 100" list.

Photo of Jamsetji Tata

2. Jamsetji Tata (1839 - 1904)

With an HPI of 55.78, Jamsetji Tata is the 2nd most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 47 different languages.

Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata (3 March 1839 – 19 May 1904) was an Indian pioneer industrialist who founded the Tata Group, India's biggest conglomerate company. Named the greatest philanthropist of the last century by several polls and ranking lists, he also established the city of Jamshedpur. Jamshedji Tata is regarded as the legendary "Father of Indian Industry". He was so influential in the world of industry that Jawaharlal Nehru referred to Tata as a One-Man Planning Commission. "When you have to give the lead in action, in ideas – a lead which does not fit in with the very climate of opinion – that is true courage, physical or mental or spiritual, call it what you like, and it is this type of courage and vision that Jamshedji Tata showed. It is right that we should honour his memory and remember him as one of the big founders of modern India." —Jawaharlal NehruTata, who in his early life was a merchant, went on to change the business world of India through his many ventures within the cotton and pig iron industry, and is known as one of the most important builders of the modern Indian economy. Out of his many achievements, Tata is particularly notable for the Tata Iron and Steel Works company in Jamshedpur.Tata was ranked first in the "Hurun Philanthropists of the Century" (2021) by total donations of nearly $102.4 billion with the start of his key endowments way back in 1892.

Photo of Ratan Tata

3. Ratan Tata (1937 - )

With an HPI of 53.99, Ratan Tata is the 3rd most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 35 different languages.

Ratan Naval Tata (born 28 December 1937) is an Indian industrialist, philanthropist and former chairman of Tata Sons. He was chairman of the Tata Group from 1990 to 2012, and interim chairman from October 2016 through February 2017. He continues to head its charitable trusts. In 2008, he received the Padma Vibhushan, the second highest civilian honour in India, after receiving the Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honour in 2000.He is the son of Naval Tata, who was adopted by Ratanji Tata, son of Jamsetji Tata, the founder of the Tata Group. He graduated from the Cornell University College of Architecture with a bachelor's degree in architecture. He joined Tata in 1961, where he worked on the shop floor of Tata Steel. He later succeeded J. R. D. Tata's as chairman of Tata Sons upon the latter's retirement in 1991. Under his tenure the Tata Group acquired Tetley, Jaguar Land Rover, and Corus, in an attempt to turn Tata from a largely India-centric group into a global business. Tata is also one of the largest philanthropists in the world, having donated around 60–65% of his income to charity.

Photo of Dhirubhai Ambani

4. Dhirubhai Ambani (1932 - 2002)

With an HPI of 53.59, Dhirubhai Ambani is the 4th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 42 different languages.

Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani (28 December 1932 – 6 July 2002) was an Indian businessman who founded Reliance Industries in 1958. Ambani took Reliance public in 1977. In 2016, he was honoured posthumously with the Padma Vibhushan, India's second-highest civilian honour for his contributions to trade and industry. Ambani faced numerous accusations of market manipulation, tax evasion, and cronyism.

Photo of Satya Nadella

5. Satya Nadella (1967 - )

With an HPI of 50.49, Satya Nadella is the 5th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 48 different languages.

Satya Narayana Nadella (Telugu: నాదెళ్ల సత్యనారాయణ, ; born 19 August 1967) is an Indian-American business executive. He is the executive chairman and CEO of Microsoft, succeeding Steve Ballmer in 2014 as CEO and John W. Thompson in 2021 as chairman. Before becoming CEO, he was the executive vice president of Microsoft's cloud and enterprise group, responsible for building and running the company's computing platforms.

Photo of Sundar Pichai

6. Sundar Pichai (1972 - )

With an HPI of 50.42, Sundar Pichai is the 6th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 54 different languages.

Pichai Sundararajan (born June 10, 1972), better known as Sundar Pichai (), is an Indian-American business executive. He is the chief executive officer (CEO) of Alphabet Inc. and its subsidiary Google.Born in Madurai, India, Pichai earned his degree from IIT Kharagpur in metallurgical engineering. Moving to the United States, he attained an M.S. from Stanford University in materials science and engineering and further attained an MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was named a Siebel Scholar and a Palmer Scholar, respectively.Pichai began his career as a materials engineer. Following a short stint at the management consulting firm McKinsey & Co., Pichai joined Google in 2004, where he led the product management and innovation efforts for a suite of Google's client software products, including Google Chrome and ChromeOS, as well as being largely responsible for Google Drive. In addition, he went on to oversee the development of other applications such as Gmail and Google Maps. In 2010, Pichai also announced the open-sourcing of the new video codec VP8 by Google and introduced the new video format, WebM. The Chromebook was released in 2012. In 2013, Pichai added Android to the list of Google products that he oversaw. Pichai was selected to become the next CEO of Google on August 10, 2015, after previously being appointed Product Chief by CEO Larry Page. On October 24, 2015, he stepped into the new position at the completion of the formation of Alphabet Inc., the new holding company for the Google company family. He was appointed to the Alphabet Board of Directors in 2017.Pichai was included in Time's annual list of the 100 most influential people in 2016 and 2020.

Photo of Azim Premji

7. Azim Premji (1945 - )

With an HPI of 48.51, Azim Premji is the 7th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 34 different languages.

Azim Hashim Premji (born 24 July 1945) is an Indian businessman and philanthropist, who was the chairman of Wipro Limited. Premji remains a non-executive member of the board and founder chairman. He is informally known as the Czar of the Indian IT Industry. He was responsible for guiding Wipro through four decades of diversification and growth, to finally emerge as one of the global leaders in the software industry. In 2010, he was voted among the 20 most powerful men in the world by Asiaweek. He has twice been listed among the 100 most influential people by Time magazine, once in 2004 and more recently in 2011. For years, he has been regularly listed one among The 500 Most Influential Muslims. He also serves as the Chancellor of Azim Premji University, Bangalore. Permji is awarded Padma Vibhushan, India's second highest civilian award, by the Government of India.According to the Forbes and Bloomberg Billionaires Index, Premji's net worth is estimated at $9.3 billion and $25 billion, respectively, as of February 2023. In 2013, he agreed to give away at least half of his wealth by signing the Giving Pledge. Premji started with a $2.2 billion donation to the Azim Premji Foundation, focused on education in India. He topped the EdelGive Hurun India Philanthropy List for 2020. In 2019, he dropped from the 2nd position in the Forbes India Rich list to 17th position after giving away a huge amount to charity.

Photo of Vijay Mallya

8. Vijay Mallya (1955 - )

With an HPI of 45.90, Vijay Mallya is the 8th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 29 different languages.

Vijay Vittal Mallya (born 18 December 1955) is an Indian businessman, former politician and fugitive. He is the subject of an extradition effort by the Indian Government to return him from the UK to face charges of financial crimes in India.The son of a businessman who was also in the alcoholic beverages business, Mallya is the ex-chairman of United Spirits, the largest spirits company in India, and continues to serve as chairman of United Breweries Group, an Indian conglomerate with interests including beverage alcohol, aviation infrastructure, real estate, and fertilizer. He has been the chairman of Sanofi India (previously known as Hoechst AG and Aventis) and the chairman of Bayer CropScience in India for over 20 years, and the chairman of several other companies. Mallya was also the founder and former owner of defunct Kingfisher Airlines and former co-owner of the Force India Formula One team before it went into administration. He is also a former owner of the Royal Challengers Bangalore cricket team.

Photo of Indra Nooyi

9. Indra Nooyi (1955 - )

With an HPI of 44.09, Indra Nooyi is the 9th most famous Indian Businessperson.  Her biography has been translated into 38 different languages.

Indra Nooyi (née Krishnamurthy; born October 28, 1955) is an Indian-American business executive and former chief executive officer and chairperson of PepsiCo.She has consistently ranked among the world's 100 most powerful women. In 2014, she was ranked at number 13 on the Forbes list of The World's 100 Most Powerful Women and was ranked the second most powerful woman on the Fortune list in 2015 and 2017. She also serves on the boards of Amazon and the International Cricket Council.

Photo of Anil Ambani

10. Anil Ambani (1959 - )

With an HPI of 41.56, Anil Ambani is the 10th most famous Indian Businessperson.  His biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Anil Dhirubhai Ambani (born 4 June 1959) is an Indian businessman. He was the chairman of Reliance Group (also known as Reliance ADA Group), which was created in July 2006 following a demerger from Reliance Industries Limited. He leads a number of stocks listed corporations including Reliance Capital, Reliance Infrastructure, Reliance Power and Reliance Communications.Ambani, once the sixth richest person in the world, declared before a UK court in February 2020 that his net worth is zero and he is bankrupt, although the veracity of that claim is in question. He served in the Rajya Sabha, the upper house of the Parliament of India from Uttar Pradesh as an Independent MP between 2004 and 2006.

Pantheon has 21 people classified as businesspeople born between 1839 and 1984. Of these 21, 17 (80.95%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living businesspeople include Lakshmi Mittal, Ratan Tata, and Satya Nadella. The most famous deceased businesspeople include Jamsetji Tata, Dhirubhai Ambani, and Chandrashekhar Agashe. As of April 2022, 4 new businesspeople have been added to Pantheon including Chandrashekhar Agashe, Gautam Adani, and Ebrahim Alkazi.

Living Businesspeople

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Deceased Businesspeople

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Newly Added Businesspeople (2022)

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Which Businesspeople were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 4 most globally memorable Businesspeople since 1700.