Ratan Tata: Success Story of Famous Entrepreneur & Former Chairperson of Tata Sons

Ratan Tata
Ratan Tata

Ratan Tata: Success Story of Famous Entrepreneur & Former Chairperson of Tata Sons

Ratan Tata is an Indian industrialist, philanthropist & a former chair person of Tata Sons. From 1990 to 2012, he was the chairperson of Tata Group.

Again from October 2016 to February 2017, he became interim chairperson & continues to held its charitable trusts.

In 2008, he received Padma Vibhushan the second highest civilian honor & in 2000, he received Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian honor.

He got Tata Tea to acquire Tetley, Tata Motors to acquire Jaguar Land Rover, and Tata Steel to acquire Corus.

He turned Tata from a largely India-centrist group to a global business. Around 60-65% of his profits are donated to charity. That makes him one of the most significant philanthropists in the world.

Early & Personal life of Ratan Tata:

Ratan Tata was born on 28th December 1937, in Mumbai, Maharashtra, India during British Raj. He is the son of Naval Tata.

His biological grandmother was the sister of Hirabai Tata, wife of Jamsetji Tata. Jamsetji was the founder of Tata group. Gujarati is his language.

Till 8th standard, he studied at the Campion School, Mumbai, that was followed by Cathedral and John Connon School, Mumbai and at Bishop Cotton School in Shimla.

In 1955, he graduated from Riverdale Country School New York. He received a degree in Architecture from Cornell University in 1959.

In 1975, he attended the seven-week Advanced Management Program of Harvard Business School — an institution which he has since endowed.

As of Ratan Tata in 2011, “ he came close to getting married four times and each time I backed off in fear or for one reason or another.”

Recently he stated that he while working in Los Angeles, he loved one girl. But as his family member was ill, he needed to return India.

The girl’s parents did not allow her to come India & that’s why Ratan Tata stood by his commitment & never married.

During 1970s, he was promoted to management. J. R. D. Tata stepped down as chairperson of Tata Sons in 1991, after naming him as a successor. Under Ratan Tata’s stewardship, overlapping operations in group companies were streamlined into a synergized whole.

He led the Tata Group, revenues grew over 40 times, and profit, over 50 times. He boldly got Tata Tea to acquire Tetley, Tata Motors to acquire Jaguar Land Rover and Tata Steel to acquire Corus.

All this decision turned Tata from a largely India-centric group into a global business, with over 65% revenues coming from operations and sales in over 100 countries.

He also conceptualized the Tata Nano car. As of Ratan Tata, the development of the Tata Nano was significant because it helped put cars at a price-point within reach of the average Indian consumer.

Ratan Tata: Indian Entrepreneur and chairman of the Tata Group

On 28th December 2012, at the age of 75, he resigned his exclusive powers in the Tata Group. Board of Directors and Legal division refused to appoint Cyrus Mistry as a successor of 44-year-old son of Pallonji Mistry of the Shapoorji Pallonji Group.

Cyrus Mistry was removed as the chairperson of Tata Sons on 24th October 2016, Ratan Tata was made interim chairperson.

On 12 January 2017, Natarajan Chandrasekaran was named as the chairman of Tata Sons, a role he assumed in February 2017.

Ratan Tata invested his personal savings in Snapdeal. Snapdeal is one of the India’s leading e-commerce websites. He also invested in Teabox, an online premium Indian Tea seller and CashKaro.com, a discount coupons and cash-back website.

He also invested INR 0.95 Cr in Ola Cabs. In 2016, he invested in Nestaway – an online portal to find fully furnished flats for bachelors.

Tata Motors rolled out the first batch of Tigor Electric Vehicles from its Sanand Plant in Gujarat. As of Ratan Tata, “Tigor indicates a willingness to fast-forward India’s electric dream.

Ratan Tata also launched India’s companionship startup for senior citizens, Goodfellows, in a bid to encourage intergenerational friendships.”


Tata supports medicine, education & rural development. He has been considered as a leading philanthropist in India.

He supported University of New South Wales Faculty of Engineering to develop capacitive deionization to provide improved water for challenged areas.

Tata Education and Development Trust is a philanthropic affiliate of Tata Group, endowed a $28  million Tata Scholarship Fund that will allow Cornell University to provide financial aid to undergraduate students from India.

Tata Group companies and Tata charities donated $50 million for the construction of an executive center at Harvard Business School (HBS) in 2010.

TCS – Tata Consultancy Services has given the largest ever donation by a company to Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) for a facility to research cognitive systems and autonomous vehicles. They donated $35 million for this grand 48,000 square-foot building that is called TCS Hall.

Under the chairmanship of Ratan Tata, Tata Trusts provided a grant of ₹750 million to the Centre for Neuroscience, Indian Institute of Science to study mechanisms underlying the cause of Alzheimer’s disease and to evolve methods for its early diagnosis and treatment.

Under the leadership of Ratan Tata, Tata Group formed the MIT Tata Center of Technology and Design at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) with a mission to address the challenges of resource-constrained communities, with an initial focus on India.

Board memberships and affiliations  :

As the interim chairman of Tata Sons, he continues to head the main two Tata trusts Sir Dorabji Tata and Allied Trusts and Sir Ratan Tata Trust.

He served in various capacities in organizations in India and abroad. He is a member of Prime Minister’s ‘Council on Trade and Industry’ and the ‘National Manufacturing Competitiveness Council’.

He is also on the jury panel of Pritzker Architecture Prize – considered to be one of the world’s premier architecture prizes.

Ratan Tata is also a member of the Harvard Business School India Advisory Board (IAB) since 2006. He was previously a member of the Harvard Business School Asia-Pacific Advisory Board (APAB) 2001–2006.

He was appointed to the Board of Trustees of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in 2013.

Honors & Awards:

  • In 2000, he received Padma Bhushan the third highest civilian award by the government of India.
  • In 2008, he was honored by Padma Vibhushan the second highest civilian award by the Government of India.
  • In 2021 he received the highest civilian award of Assam ‘Assam Baibhav’ for his exceptional contribution towards furthering cancer care in Assam.

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