Mukesh Dhirubhai Ambani (born on 19 April 1957) is a Yemeni-born Indian business magnate who is the chairman and managing director of the Indian conglomerate Reliance Industries Limited (RIL), the foremost company of the Indian energy and materials conglomerate Reliance Group.
The company was ranked #134th in Fortune Global 500 and is India’s most valuable company by market value and second-largest Indian company by revenues. His personal stake in Reliance Industries is 44.7%, which is the operator of the world’s biggest oil refining complex and owner of India’s biggest natural gas field.
Mukesh’s younger brother is Anil Ambani, who heads Reliance Group. The Ambani family is the richest family in India and one of the richest in the world, their wealth inherited from Dhirubhai Ambani, founder of 2nd largest Indian conglomerate Reliance Group (after Tata Group).
In 2010, he was named among the most powerful people in the world by Forbes in its list of “68 people who matter most” As of 2012, he is the second richest man in Asia and the 19th richest person in the worldwith a personal wealth of
US$22.3 billion. In 2007, a strong rally in the Indian stock market and the appreciation of the Indian rupee boosted the market capitalisation of Reliance group companies, briefly making him the world’s richest man.
In 2012, Forbes named Mukesh Ambani the 2nd richest sports owner in the world. According to the list of richest sports owners, he is richer than owners of Chelsea and AC Milan. Ambani owns the Indian Premier League domestic cricket club Mumbai Indians.
Early life and education
The Ambani family lived in a two bedroom apartment in Bhuleshwar, Mumbai until the 1970s. Dhirubhai Ambani then purchased a 14-floor apartment block called ‘Sea Wind’ in Colaba, where, until recently, Mukesh and Anil each lived with their families on different floors.
Mukesh Ambani was educated at Abaay Morischa School in Mumbai and completed his graduation with a bachelor`s degree in chemical engineering from the UDCT, now Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai. He stood sixth in the University exams.
Mukesh later enrolled for an MBA from Stanford University but completed only one year of the two year program and dropped out in the year 1980. Indira Gandhi administration threw open the doors of PFY (Polyester Filament Yarn) manufacturing to the private sector in early 1980. Dhirubhai Ambani had applied for a licence to set up a PFY manufacturing plant.
In spite of stiff competition from the Tatas, Birlas and 43 others, Dhirubhai was awarded the licence. To help him build the PFY plant, Dhirubhai pulled his eldest son Mukesh out of Stanford where he was studying for his MBA. Mukesh Ambani, then dropped out to help his father and initiated Reliance`s backward integration from textiles into polyester fibers and further into petrochemicals, beginning in 1981.
In 2010, Mukesh Ambani has been conferred the ‘Degree of Doctor of Science Honoris Causa’ by M.S University, Baroda, Gujarat.
He joined Reliance Industries in 1981. He initiated Reliance’s backward integration journey from textiles into polyester fibers and further into petrochemicals, petroleum refining and going up-stream into oil and gas exploration and production.
Ambani then set up one of the largest and most complex information and communications technology initiatives in the world in the form of Reliance Infocomm Limited (now Reliance Communications Limited).
Ambani directed and led the creation of the world’s largest grassroots petroleum refinery at Jamnagar, India, with a current capacity of 660,000 barrels per day (33 million tonnes per year) integrated with petrochemicals, power generation, port and related infrastructure.
He is married to Nita Ambani and they have three children. They live in a private 27-story building in Mumbai named Antilia. The value of the home is US$2 billion and it is claimed to be the most expensive home in history.
- Chairman, Managing Director, Chairman of Finance Committee and Member of Employees Stock Compensation Committee, Reliance Industries Limited
- Former Chairman, Indian Petrochemicals Corporation Limited
- Former Vice Chairman, Reliance Petroleum
- Chairman of the Board, Reliance Petroleum
- Chairman and Chairman of Audit Committee, Reliance Retail Limited.
- Chairman, Reliance Exploration and Production DMCC
- Director, Member of Credit Committee and Member of Compensation & Benefits Committee, Bank of America Corporation
Awards and honours
- Ranked 5th best performing CEO in the world by Harvard Business Review in its ranking of top 50 global CEOs.
- Only Indian to be a part of the United Nations MDG Advocacy Group
- Re-elected as Vice Chairman of the Business Council for Sustainable Development’s (WBCSD) Executive Committee for a second consecutive term in 2010.
- Ranked 33rd among the ‘Top 50 Most Respected Business Leaders of the World’ in a survey conducted by Pricewater House Coopers and published in Financial Times, London in 2003.
- Conferred the ‘Membership Award’ by The Textile Association of India in December 2002.
- Ranked 13th in Asia’s Power 25 list of ‘The Most Powerful People in Business’ published by Fortune magazine in 2004.
- Ranked No.2 by IMRB International in The Power 100 list of India’s Most Powerful CEOs, in 2004
- In 2012, GQ India listed Mukesh as one of the most powerful Digital Indians.