Mr. Birla took over as Chairman of the Group in 1995, at the age of 28, after the untimely demise of his father. As Chairman, Mr. Birla has taken the Aditya Birla Group to an altogether higher growth trajectory. In the 24 years that he has been at the helm of the Group, he has accelerated growth, built a meritocracy and enhanced stakeholder value.
In the process, he has raised the Group’s turnover from US$ 2 billion in 1995, to US$ 48.3 billion today. Mr. Birla has restructured the businesses to emerge as a global/national leader in the sectors in which the Group operates. He has made 36 acquisitions in 20 years in India and globally, the highest by an Indian multinational in India.
The acquisition of Novelis, a global metals major, in 2007, the second largest acquisition ever by an Indian company, led to a new found respect for Indian companies and stoked a higher level of interest in the country as well. The subsequent acquisition of Columbian Chemicals, a US based company and the world’s 3rd largest carbon black manufacturer positioned the Group as the No. 1 player in this sector, given its own sizeable carbon black operations today. Likewise, the acquisition of Domsjö Fabriker, a leading Swedish speciality pulp manufacturer enables the Group’s Pulp and Fibre business to further consolidate its global position. The acquisition of CTP GmbH – Chemicals & Technologies for Polymers in Germany was yet another milestone acquisition.
Recently, Mr. Birla through Novelis, our Group company, had bid for Aleris, a US major metals company for a consideration of 2.6 billion dollars.
Besides these, over the years Mr. Birla has acquired manufacturing plants in Canada, China, Indonesia and mines in Australia, set up new plants in Egypt, Thailand and China. Alongside, he has expanded capacities in all of the Group’s manufacturing units.
In India as well, he has made major acquisitions, among which feature (a selective list) Jaypee Cement plants, Binani Cement, Cement division of Larsen & Toubro, Indal from Alcan, Madura Garments from Coats Viyella, the Chlor Alkali division of Kanoria Chemicals and Solaris Chemtech Industries.
The most recent merger of Vodafone and Idea engineered by Mr. Birla has created the largest telecom operator in India and the world’s second largest player.
Under his stewardship, the Aditya Birla Group enjoys a position of leadership in all the major sectors in which it operates. Over the years, Mr. Birla has built a highly successful meritocratic organization, anchored by an extraordinary force of 120,000 employees belonging to 42 different nationalities. The Aditya Birla Group has been ranked 4th in the world and 1st in Asia Pacific in the ‘Top Companies for Leaders’ study 2011, conducted by AON Hewitt, Fortune Magazine and RBL (a strategic HR and leadership Advisory firm). The Group has topped Nielsen's Corporate Image Monitor 2014-15 and emerged as the Number 1 corporate, the 'Best in Class', for the third successive year. The Group won yet again the coveted recognition of ‘The Best Employers to work for in India’ by AON – Hewitt in 2018.