SPARK OF THE CORPORATE
Kumar Mangalam Birla is a young and dynamic entrepreneur of India as well as the world, ranking eighth youngest billionaire of the world. He took up the reigns of huge business empire of Birla’s, as a chairman, at a tender age of 28yrs .Sudden demise of his father made him to take the crucial responsibility of heading the business. The group was named as Aditya Birla Group after Aditya Vikram Birla. The way Kumar Mangalam Birla expanded the business in the past two decades, demystified the thoughts of people who doubted his management skills.
Back in 1995, when Kumar Mangalam Birla took over the reins of the AV Birla group, the turnover was $2bn and the overseas operations accounted to a minor part, in Egypt, Thailand and Indonesia.
Under strong leadership of Kumar Mangalam Birla the group’s turnover spiraled up to $33bn, which is fifteen times the earlier revenue. Birla group has its wide spread operations across more than 40 countries including Australia, Dubai, and reaching out to North America, Canada, Brazil, Germany, Italy, Spain, Hungary and China. 60% of the revenues come from abroad and 1,30,000 people are being hired globally for their business operations.
Kumar Mangalam Birla being a powerful strategist and visionary could tap the potentials in business along various verticals and various geographies and with his boundless efforts and hard work he widened the business base of the giant conglomerate. He acquired 22 companies within past 15yrs within India and outside, but still stayed within their capabilities of management and to stay strong enough in business. Thus, Kumar Mangalam Birla carried the saga of Birla’s and took up the pride of Birla’s both in India and in Global arena.
Kumar Mangalam Birla started his career as chairman of Aditya Birla Group, after his father in 1995. Before starting as chairman of the Birla group he was man of knowledge, intellect, perseverance and was independently handling Grasim's cement division, the fertilizer business of Indo-Gulf, and also a newly setup carbon black unit in Egypt. His father built companies from the scratch both in India and out of India. Before Kumara Mangalam Birla, most of the business was dependent on cyclic commodities.
As it came to the fourth generation, Kumar Mangalam Birla felt that the challenges have changed and the level and quality of competition has gone up. World has become small due to globalization and that there was a constant need of reinvention in business. As a response to all these challenges he shifted the focus of the business from commodity centric to customer centric. This gave a high competitive edge to the company.
Kumar Mangalam Birla has expanded business primarily through acquisitions, snapping up 22 companies in the past 15 years, both overseas and in India. The $6-billion acquisition of Canadian aluminium rolled product giant Novelis has been Birla's biggest takeover so far. He has also bought mines in Australia; Star Trading, a cement company in Dubai; and UltraTech Cement Ltd in India from Larsen and Toubro Ltd. Later he announced a deal to buy carbon black maker Columbian Chemicals Co for $875mn to become the biggest manufacturer of carbon black.
Kumar Mangalam Birla has a great interest and inclination to enter into new avenues of business and under his leader ship; the group entered new segments like business process outsourcing, in which Transworks-Minacs is the third largest third-party BPO outfit in the country, and Idea Cellular, market capitalization of which is over $8 billion, accounts now for almost a third of the group market cap.
Under Kumara Mangalam Birla the company made its name among the world's top ten producers of cement, aluminum. It also entered into sunrise sectors like cellulars, BPO, software and asset management. The major businesses include Grasim, Hindalco, Ultra-tech cement, Idea cellular and Aditya Birla Retail. By taking the advantage of globalization having seeded by his father, he built upon the inherited strong base and broadened the business platform of Birla group and accelerated the growth and development, and hence proved his abilities and efficiencies.
The group is today the world number one in viscose staple fibre; the world's largest single-location palm oil producer; Asia's largest integrated aluminium producer; a globally competitive, fast-growing copper producer; the world's third-largest producer of insulators; globally the fourth-largest producer of carbon black; the world's eighth-largest producer of cement and the largest in a single geography; India's premier branded garments player; among India's most energy efficient private sector fertilizer plants; India's second-largest producer of viscose filament yarn; the number two private sector insurance company and the fourth-largest asset management company in India.
The Fantastic Four
Kumar Mangalam Birla, the 40-year-old Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group, was born exactly20 years after his great grandfather, Ghanshyamdas Birla, set up Gwalior Rayon (now Grasim Industries) in 1947. Eighteen years after that, his grandfather, Basant Kumar Birla set up Century Enka. And when his late father, Aditya Vikram Birla, set up his first overseas venture Indo-Thai Synthetics in 1969, Kumar Mangalam was just two.
Even though Birla’s inherited the business, the Birla of each generation also established new business ventures. Kumar Mangalam Birla inherited Hindalco, Grasim and Indian rayon, where as the companies he started and acquired are Retail venture, Idea cellular, Ultratech cement, Trans work, Aditya Birla minerals, Birla Sun -life insurance and asset management.
Basant kumar Birla, Chairman of BK Birla Group, Grand father of Kumar Mangalam Birla said in his statement that “In terms of management style, the change from GhanshyamDas Birla to me was 10%, from me to Aditya 25%. But from Aditya to Kumar Mangalam Birla, it was 75%.
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