India Inc entered the 21st Century more confident and more competitive. Many of the previous decade's top ten were not even around a decade earlier. In this era of change few thought in year 2000 that by 2010 Ratan Tata would continue to head any list of high performers. He did!
Life began for Ratan Tata in 2000. That year, Tata Tea acquired Tetley of the United Kingdom. This was the first major acquisition of a global brand by an Indian company. Four years later, it was Tata Motors' turn - it bought the heavy vehicles business of bankrupt Daewoo Motors in South Korea. Next year, Tata Steel acquired NatSteel in Singapore.
All of this paled into insignificance in 2007 when Tata Steel bought Anglo-Dutch steel maker Corus for $12 billion. It made Tata Steel the fifth largest steel company in the world. A year later, Tata Motors became the new owner of marquee brands Jaguar and Land Rover after it paid Ford $2.3 billion. The crowning glory came in 2009 when he launched an ultra-low-cost car, the Nano. Not bad at all.
The decade that draws to an end will go down in history as the one in which Indian business spread its footprint across the globe. Strong economic growth till 2008, which was driven by domestic consumption, had filled the coffers of most companies.
The flow of global capital had taken the stock markets to new heights, which made Indian businessmen rich beyond compare. The list of Indian billionaires had become long. They had the money to buy assets that were on the block.
Image: Ratan Tata
Also see: Yearender '09
Text: Business Standard
Image courtesy: Getty /AFP