When Anand Mahindra took a leadership position at the Mahindra group in 1991, the group was reeling in losses.
It made a profit by selling a floor of real estate that year.
It was also a turning point in Indian history: the nation was opening its doors to foreign investment and Anand Mahindra, then deputy managing director at 36, helped the group turn a profit by threatening to cut worker bonuses and restructuring heavily.
"There was scepticism this company would not survive," Mahindra said in an interview.
Twenty years later, the agriculture-to-aerospace conglomerate is raking in more than $12 billion in revenue.
In fiscal year 2011, it turned a profit of nearly $700 million on revenue of $8.7 billion.
Text: Jui Chakravorty, Reuters