India’s ‘Warren Buffett’ dies
Billionaire Indian business magnate, prominent stock trader, investor, and TV celebrity Rakesh Jhunjhunwala died on Sunday at age 62.
“Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was indomitable. Full of life, witty and insightful, he leaves behind an indelible contribution to the financial world. He was also very passionate about India’s progress. His passing away is saddening,” Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted following reports of Jhunjhunwala’s death.
The cause of death has not been made public, but media reports indicate that Jhunjhunwala had been dealing with health issues and was seen in a wheelchair earlier this month.
A chartered accountant by profession, he started trading in stocks in 1985 while still in college, beginning with just $100. His early investments paid off, and he later turned to managing a stock trading firm, RARE Enterprises. His prominence on the stock market made him a popular TV celebrity and allowed him to accumulate a net worth of $5.8 billion at the time of his death, according to Forbes.
Jhunjhunwala’s investments include several companies run by one of India’s largest conglomerates, Tata Group conglomerate. These include automaker Tata Motors, ratings firm Crisil, watch and jewelry-maker Titan, Tata Communications, and Indian Hotels, which runs Taj Hotels. His latest investments include a 40% stake in low-cost airline Akasa Air, which made its first flight earlier this month. An outspoken supporter of Bollywood, he also financed a few movies.
Apart from accumulating a fortune, Jhunjhunwala was eager to share it. He had a namesake foundation, was one of the founders and trustees of Ashoka University, and a regular donor to the Agastya International Foundation, offering science education to the poor.
Jhunjhunwala is often referred to as ‘India’s Warren Buffett’ after the US business magnate, investor, and philanthropist.
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