Mukesh Ambani

A Chemical Engineer from the Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai, Mukesh Ambani has pursued an MBA from Stanford University in the US. Being on the Board of Reliance Industries since 1977, he has played a significant role in the Group’s backward integration journey – from textiles to polyester fibres and further onto petrochemicals and petroleum refining, and going upstream into oil and gas exploration and production. Owing to his dedicated efforts in creation of multiple new world-class manufacturing facilities involving diverse technologies, Reliance’s petrochemicals manufacturing capacities have seen an increase from less than a million tonnes to about 21 million tonnes per year.


In the late nineties, Mukesh Ambani not only created the world’s largest grassroots petroleum refinery at Jamnagar in Gujarat, India, with a capacity of 660,000 barrels per day (33 million tonnes a year), but also integrated it with petrochemicals, power generation, port and related infrastructure. In addition, he set up another 580,000-barrels-per-day refinery next to the first one in Jamnagar. No wonder Jamnagar emerged as the refining hub of the world with an aggregate refining capacity of 1.24 million barrels of oil per day at a single location. He also spearheaded the development of infrastructure facilities and created a pan-India organized retail network spanning multiple formats and supply chain infrastructure. Since 2006, Reliance Retail has been delivering superior value to its customers, suppliers and shareholders and has established itself as India’s largest retailer. Its network of retail outlets all across the nation, delivers a world-class shopping environment and unmatched customer experience by virtue of its state-of-theart technology and seamless supply-chain infrastructure. Extremely optimistic about the future of the nation, he applauds India’s entrepreneurial spirit. He feels that every small entrepreneur in India can become a Dhirubhai or a Bill Gates as the entrepreneurial talent in India is huge. An advocate of innovation, he asserts, “Essentially, whoever is successful, whoever is going to do things that make a difference, is going to be talked about.” He feels that business is a level playing field where everyone gets an equal opportunity to excel. “Everybody has equal opportunity and I think that is true for everything,” he says. Despite reaching the pinnacle of success, he feels that there is still a lot of scope to grow and expand. As he puts it, “I think our fundamental belief is that for us growth is a way of life and we have to grow at all times.”


Mukesh Ambani has created global records in customer acquisition for Jio – the Group’s digital services initiative. He has efficiently spearheaded the creation of one of the world’s most expansive 4G broadband wireless network offering end-to-end solutions. It caters to the entire value chain across various digital services in key domains of national interest, such as education, healthcare, security, financial services, governmentcitizen interfaces, entertainment, to name a few. He is of the view that India has a mobile network that is better or at par with any country in the world and it is all set to become a “premier digital society.” He feels that the big change driving this transformation is the deepening of mobile networks that are currently working at a much faster pace than before. “It all kick-started in 2014 when PM gave us the vision of Digital India … 380 million people have migrated to Jio’s 4G technology,” he says. “Pre-Jio, the data speed was 256 kbps; and post-Jio, it is 21 Mbps, he declares with pride. He believes that policy steps are needed to accelerate the early rollout of ultra-high-speed 5G services that are affordable and available everywhere. He is certain about the fact that 5G will enable India not only to participate in the Fourth Industrial Revolution but also to lead it.


Mukesh Ambani believes in knowledgesharing and actively contributes his rich insights as a member of various national and international organizations. He is a member of the Prime Minister’s Council on Trade and Industry, Government of India, and the Board of Governors of the National Council of Applied Economic Research, India. He is also a member of The Foundation Board of the World Economic Forum, the Global Advisory Council of Bank of America, Stanford Global Advisory Council, McKinsey & Company International Advisory Council, The Business Council, India Advisory Group of the London School of Economics, Indo-U.S. CEOs’ Forum, International Advisory Council of The Brookings Institution and Board of Governors of the National Council of Applied Economic Research, India. He is an elected Foreign Member of the prestigious United States National Academy of Engineering. Mr Mukesh Ambani is an elected Foreign Member of the prestigious United States National Academy of Engineering. Only nine other Indians have received this honour. He is also the Chairman of the Board of Governors, Pandit Deendayal Petroleum University in Gujarat and India Advisory Council of The British Asian Trust.


Mukesh Ambani is the only Indian to be featured on Global Game Changers List of a leading international magazine. He has been awarded as Economic Times Business Leader of the Year, 2017 and has won Othmer Gold Medal by Chemical Heritage Foundation, USA in 2016. He was offered an honorary Doctor of Philosophy degree by the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Roorkee in and Honorary Doctor of Science by Institute of Chemical Technology, Mumbai in 2013. He was conferred the title of ‘Entrepreneur of the Decade’ by All-India Management Association in 2013.


Mukesh Ambani’s vision of an inclusive India is being realized through Reliance Foundation. Spearheaded by his better half, Smt. Nita M. Ambani, Reliance Foundation was established in 2010 to provide impetus to various philanthropic initiatives of Reliance Industries Limited (RIL). The efforts of the group have already touched the lives of more than 39.5 million people across India in more than 40,000 villages and several urban locations.

Sajjan Jindal


All dreams are made of a magical concoction whose ingredients comprise passion, grit and an insurmountable determination to work hard and win against all odds. Sajjan Jindal inherited this magical concoction and chiseling his dreams, developed one of India’s leading business houses, with a workforce of over 40,000. Diversifying his Group gradually to master other verticals, he forayed into cement, infrastructure, energy and so on, with a dream to help build a new nation. Leading India’s largest private steel producer, Sajjan Jindal has displayed mettle of steel as he has guided JSW Steel through the strategic tie-up with the world’s sixth-largest and Japan’s second largest steel producer JFE Steel.

Son of the Indian businessman and parliamentarian, Om Prakash Jindal and India’s richest woman, Savitri Jindal, Sajjan Jindal belongs to the highly revered Jindal family and the JSW Group, whose net worth is USD 13 billion.

He and his brothers, Prithviraj, Ratan and Naveen, each run their own businesses that were primarily inherited from their father. Married to Sangita Jindal, who is the Chairperson of JSW Foundation, they have two daughters, Tarini and Tanvi, and a son, Parth. He holds B.E. in Mechanical Engineering from M S Ramaiah Institute of Technology, Bangalore being affiliated from Visvesvaraya Technological University, Belgaum, Karnataka. Joining the family business right after his graduation, he moved to Mumbai to look after the western region operations of O.P. Jindal Group in 1983. He promoted Jindal Iron and Steel Company Ltd. (JISCO), for manufacturing of Cold Rolled and Galvanized Sheet Products in 1989, promoted Jindal Vijaynagar Steel Ltd. (JVSL), JSW Energy Ltd. (JSWEL), Jindal Praxiar Oxygen Ltd. (JPOCL) and Vijaynagar Minerals Private Ltd. (VMPL) to ensure complete integration of the manufacturing progress in 1995. In 2005, he merged JISCO and JVSL to form JSW Steel; their holdings group has the same name, JSW.


Commanding one of India’s fastest growing conglomerates, JSW Group which is a USD 13 billion company and an integral part of the O. P. Jindal Group, Sajjan Jindal has developed some of the major projects in India and has played a key role in nation building. He asserts, “We pursue growth zealously. In the face of all challenges, the most effective way to overcome them was to grow. Faster than the market, bigger than the competition.” Guiding JSW to become one of India’s top business houses, his innovative and sustainable ideas have helped all verticals of the Group: Steel, Energy, Cement and Infrastructure. Believing in creating values of the highest order, he has invariably focused on creating superior strength of products & services, a differentiated product mix, state-of-the-art technology, and then excellence in execution and focus on sustainability for assured success and growth. Like all great leaders, he too initiated with small steps and a humble beginning in the steel sector of India; however, with consistent efforts guided his Group to expand its presence across India, South America, South Africa and Europe.


He has received the Willy Korf/Ken Iverson Steel Vision Award for his contribution to the steel industry, the ‘Outstanding Business Leader of the Year Award’ at the 14th edition of the CNBC IBLA 2019 Awards, the Outstanding Business Leader of the year 2018 award, CEO of the Year award, JRD Tata Award for Excellence in Corporate Leadership in Metallurgical industry, National Metallurgist Award in Industry category instituted by the Ministry of Steel, Government of India, Best CEO award, and several other prestigious national and international awards. An ex President of the Associated Chamber of Commerce and Industry of India (ASSOCHAM), he is a renowned and respected practitioner of sustainable business practices.

Elon Musk

In an era often defined by new technology, the 50-year-old zillionaire, Musk has emerged as one of the most genuinely innovative entrepreneurs of his generation. He has been an inspiration for the world to go green. No wonder leading auto companies ranging from Ford to Volkswagen to Mercedes-Benz to Toyota have unequivocally committed their futures to electric vehicles. As he puts it, “For a long time, the rest of the auto industry was basically calling Tesla and me fools and frauds. They were saying electric cars wouldn’t work; you can’t achieve the range and performance. And even if you did that, nobody would buy them.” But he has proved everybody wrong. In fact he has triggered a historic shift in the world’s auto industry towards green mobility. Musk rightfully deserves the credit of transforming one of the world’s most important industries – the automotive industry – and paving the path for a sustainable future.


Born to a Canadian mother and South African father, Musk was brought up in Pretoria, South Africa. He briefly attended the University of Pretoria before moving to Canada at age 17 to avoid conscription. He enrolled at Queen’s University and two years later transferred to the University of Pennsylvania, where he received a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Physics. Thereafter, he moved to California in 1995 to attend Stanford University. However, he changed his mind and decided instead to pursue a business career. Thus, he ended up co-founding the web software company Zip2 with his brother Kimbal. This startup was acquired by Compaq for $307 million in 1999. The same year, Musk co-founded online bank, which merged with Confinity in 2000 to form PayPal. The firm was taken over by eBay for $1.5 billion in the year 2002. In 2002, Musk founded SpaceX, an aerospace manufacturer and space transport services company, of which he is CEO and CTO. In 2004, he joined electric vehicle manufacturer Tesla Motors, Inc. (now Tesla, Inc.) as Chairman and Product Architect, becoming its CEO in 2008. In 2006, he helped create SolarCity, a solar energy services company that was later acquired by Tesla and became Tesla Energy. In 2016, Tesla became the world’s first vertically-integrated sustainable energy company with the acquisition of SolarCity, the leading provider of solar power systems in the United States, and in 2017 it launched Solar Roof – a beautiful and affordable energy generation product.


As the Co-founder and CEO of Tesla, Musk has been leading all product design, engineering and global manufacturing of the firm’s electric vehicles, battery products and solar energy products. Under his exemplary leadership, Tesla has been on a mission to accelerate the world’s transition to sustainable energy for a cleaner future, since its inception in 2003. Roadster sports car was Tesla’s first product, launched in 2008.

It was followed by the Model S sedan, which was introduced in 2012. Model S proved that electric cars could compete with the best on style and performance. Its Model X SUV was launched in 2015. These models have garnered immense popularity over time. Model S has received Consumer Reports’ ‘Best Overall Car’ and has been named the ‘Ultimate Car of the Year’ by Motor Trend, while Model X was the first SUV ever to earn 5-star safety ratings in every category and sub-category in the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration’s tests.

Tesla came up with Model 3 in the 2017. Model 3 has successfully brought technology to a wider market. It is a mass-market electric vehicle with more than 320 miles of range. It also launched Tesla Semi, which is designed to save owners at least $200,000 over a million miles based on fuel costs alone. It unveiled Cybertruck in 2019, possessing better utility than a traditional truck and more performance than a sports car. Its Model Y compact SUV, began customer deliveries in early 2020.


As lead designer at SpaceX, Musk efficiently oversees the development of rockets and spacecraft for missions to Earth orbit and ultimately to other planets. Under his able leadership, the SpaceX Falcon 1 became the first privately developed liquid fuel rocket to reach orbit in 2008, and SpaceX by re-flying both a Falcon 9 rocket and Dragon spacecraft for the first time, made further history in 2017. Soon after, Falcon Heavy, the most powerful operational rocket in the world by a factor of two, completed its first flight in 2018. In 2019, SpaceX’s crew capable version of the Dragon spacecraft completed its first demonstration mission, and the company flew NASA astronauts to the International Space Station for the first time in 2020.

Currently, SpaceX is developing Starship (a fully reusable transportation system that will carry crew and cargo to the Moon, Mars and beyond) and Starlink, which will deliver high speed broadband internet to locations where access has been unreliable, expensive, or completely unavailable. By pioneering reusable rockets, SpaceX is pursuing the long-term goal of making humans a multi-planet species by creating a self-sustaining city on Mars. Talking about Starship, he elaborates, “Starship is a hard, hard, hard, hard project. This is the biggest rocket ever made. It will have a thrust and mass double that of a Saturn V, which is the largest rocket to reach orbit, and is intended to be fully and rapidly reusable. If we are successful with this, which I think we will be, I don’t know if we will be there in 2022. I hope so. This is a profound revolution in access to orbit. There has never been a fully reusable orbital launch vehicle. This is the holy grail of space technology.” He adds, “It is the fundamental breakthrough that is necessary for humanity to become a space civilization. This absorbs more of my mental energy than probably any other single thing. But it is so preposterously difficult that there are times where I wonder whether we can actually do this.”


In 2013, Musk proposed the Hyperloop, a high-speed vactrain transportation system. It is a high-speed vacuum tube transportation system that is twice as fast as air travel, and much more energy efficient. In 2015, he co-founded OpenAI, a nonprofit research company that promotes friendly artificial intelligence. In 2016, he co-founded Neuralink, a neurotechnology company focused on developing brain–computer interfaces. As the CEO of Neuralink, Musk has been developing ultra-high bandwidth brain-machine interfaces to connect the human brain to computers. No wonder, he has been dexterously driving Tesla, SpaceX, & Neuralink towards new horizons of success.

Ananya Birla

Apart from being a karmayogi, who is living the dream, she is driven by the vision to bring about a positive change in society. Her venture Svatantra Microfin supports women entrepreneurs in the rural areas to grow and become financially more secure.


Ananya always chose to do things differently. A quiet, observant and introspective child, she had an interest in music since an early age. She learnt to play santoor when she was just 11 years old. As she grew, so did her interest in music. She taught herself to play the guitar with the help of video tutorials on the web. This was the beginning of a passion that continues to grow even today. She is an acclaimed singer who writes her own songs. ‘I Don’t Want to Love’ is her much acclaimed song which first brought her to the music scene. She was signed as an artiste by the Universal Music Group (India). Her debut single ‘Livin the Life’was launched worldwide in November 2016. ‘Meant to Be’ is the second international single to be released in July 2017 & has been certified ‘PLATINUM’ as per the standards followed by the Indian music industry, which makes her the first Indian artist to go Platinum.


Ananya studied at the Oxford University, UK, where she pursued degrees in Economics & Management. As a student, she developed keen interest in music & started singing & playing the guitar; while still managing her microfinance venture Svatantra over Skype calls with a capable team back home in India. During her stay in London, Ananya also worked as a counsellor for a student welfare charity. She met & interacted with many young people of her age who were suffering from anxiety & depression. This experience shook her from within & after returning to India, she set up a mental health initiative called MPower along with her mother Neerja Birla. MPower works to stamp out the stigma towards people with mental illness in India. It also sensitizes people towards mental illnesses like anxiety & depression that are so common in our society today & can be controlled with family’s cooperation. She felt a greater need to start Mpower because in India, it is difficult to change perceptions related to mental health, so she decided to take up the challenge of repairing the innate conditioning of the people which perceive mental illness as an evilHer venture MPower is a timely step in this direction as it is high time to fight for rights of people with mental illness & help them to be understood & treated supportively like any other person who is unwell. Under her able leadership, The MPower centre provides holistic mental health care solutions to children, young people, and adolescents, & their families. The foundation helps people with psychological difficulties lead meaningful lives without social exclusion. It also helps create awareness by organising workshops for the youth. Ananya’s entrepreneurial instincts led her to start an e-commerce platform – Curo Carte – which is a global ecommerce platform that provides handmade & high-end luxury products, curated from nine countries. The online portal is an amalgamation of design, beauty and lifestyle & offers around 1500 products across 70 categories. An inspiration to today’s youth, Ananya Birla exemplifies the courage to let go of the comfort zone and pursue one’s dreams by working hard to be the best at each & every endeavour, and light up the way for others simultaneously.

Adar Poonawalla

The CEO and Executive Director of Serum Institute of Technology, Adar Poonawalla is a perfect combination of vigor, energy, and sharp focus. The son of Dr. Cyrus S. Poonawalla, the young leader has inherited all the right and relevant qualities to run a successful business from his father, who had established the Serum Institute of Technology in 1996. Now in his position as the leader, Adar is taking his father’s vision ahead with real-time planning, smart innovation, and the zest to take the firm to newer heights of success.


Adar got the first-hand experience of running businesses by observing his father, who was leading one of the biggest enterprises in India today. He always learnt keenly and was motivated to be a part of the growing company. Therefore, after completing his education from the University of Westminster, he joined the company in 2001. He spent a decade across positions learning the tricks and trades of business and keeping a fine balance between the two main aspects — leader’s vision and learner’s attitude. He was then promoted to the position of CEO and now holds full control of the day-to-day operations of the company. Since then, he has taken major policy decisions that have influenced the growth of the company in a positive way.


At the time when Adar joined the company, the Serum Institute was very much India-centric and was exporting to not more than 30-40 countries.

Adar saw it as an opportunity to expand the company’s business to other parts of the world and successfully accomplished the mission in less than three years. Since then the company’s exports have grown and now Serum Institute exports to 147 countries.

Also, In the year 2014, Adar Poonawalla initiated the launch of Serum Institute’s Oral Polio Vaccine, which went on to become the best seller for the company, and now he plans to launch a new vaccine for promoting health every year.

Lately, the institute also collaborated with University of Oxford and the British-Swedish pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca for making the COVID-19 vaccine, ‘Covidshield’ and is conducting trials in India. Adar has said India’s vaccination drive may begin by January 2021 as the company is hoping to get emergency-use authorization by the end of 2020.


The zeal to carve a niche has made Adar the honed leader that he is today. Apart from possessing great business acumen and being socially responsible, Adar Poonawalla also happens to have had a humble upbringing; being the only child to very fortunate parents did not spoil him.

In fact, his father had been a very strict parent to him during his childhood days and taught him the human values, shouldering responsibilities, and being accountable to those around us. Adar believes that his father has been the greatest source of inspiration for him and he has learnt a lot when it comes to the way one manages people, looks at opportunities and weighs risks.

He also believes, like his father, that wasting time on something that is not worth is useless and quick decision-making is a key skill for success in business. As a socially responsible entrepreneur, Adar has invested over $20 Millions in philanthropy and for various other humanitarian causes.

Smt. Savitri Jindal


The Chairperson Emeritus, OP Jindal Group, Smt. Savitri Jindal is not only renowned in Haryana and India but in the whole world as a popular leader. She has lead with grace the life of a successful wife, a successful mother, a successful politician as well as a successful entrepreneur. Even though all of her four sons are successful businessmen, they are rooted in values and their philosophy of life is of Gandhism – simplicity is their special identity. She has also successfully handled the responsibility of Ministry of Revenue and ban cal dies in ayana, in the ast he is cntibting t the field of education as the Chancellor of Jain Vishwabharati, Ladnun, Rajasthan. Her role as the President of Maharaja Agrasen Medical College, Agroha, a symbol of medical service in Southern Haryana, is being appreciated far and wide. A philanthropist to the core, she is extremely passionate about serving the society. Donning many hats with élan, Smt. Savitri Jindal is a living legend, whose life is an inspiration for one and all!

Q. You have played an important role in taking Jindal Group to great heights. Please share your experiences with our readers on how you went from being a successful housewife to a successful entrepreneur.

A. I was taking care of the house but after the sudden demise of Jindal sahib, I had to come forward to handle the business. If the shadow of a father suddenly removed from the head, then the mother has to play the role of the father. Jindal sahib left behind a legacy of keeping the society and family together in the thread of love. He had an amazing ability to take everyone along, so taking inspiration from him, I played my part as a link – both with the kids and also with the Hisar-Haryana family. I am very proud of my children, who have not only successfully handled the business following the path shown by Jindal sahib but are also living together lovingly and operating their business and family together.

In today’s environment it is difficult for two brothers to live together but it is a big thing for us that all my children are living together with love. Jindal sahib also thought that everyone should live together and our children respected his wish. We are all together. In my view, love and mutual trust are the keys to success.

Q. You are an inspiration to those women entrepreneurs who are trying their luck in various fields and aspire to achieve big goals. What is your message to them?

A. Knowledge, hard work, honesty, patience, mutual love and trust are the basic formulas of success in business. Jindal sahib used to say – “Each one belongs to us. All employees are ours, like family members.” I believe the same and my children also believe that employees are members of the family. I want to tell my entrepreneur sisters that you need to be always up to date about your businesses. Do your business with hard work and honesty; if you do not cheat on anyone, then God also helps you and you move forward.

Q. Despite having reached the pinnacle of success, you remain grounded and humble. We, at AsiaOne, appreciate your remarkable efforts to give back to the society. Please share some of the social causes which are close to your heart.

A. As a child, I have seen my grandfather, parents, uncles and aunts and both brothers and sisters – how they used to come forward to help the needy. After marriage, I got inspired by Jindal sahib as he used to take a great interest in social work. He used to say, “God has given us a lot, so we should also do something for the society.” He laid great emphasis on education because he believed that education is the right way to attain prosperity. He always used to inspire everyone for girl child education. He used to say, “If a girl studies, then two houses will prosper and if a boy studies then only one house.”

Education and health & wellness are subjects that are very close to my heart. I would also like to share one thing that wherever we have factories, we have built schools, colleges, and hospitals for the kids of workers so that they can study. Basically, our aim is to ensure that they can learn employable skills so that they may get employment after completion of their studies.

Vidyadevi Jindal Residential School, OP Jindal School, OP Jindal Global University, OP Jindal University – Raigarh, OP Jindal Community College are some of the initiatives through which we are trying to promote the talents of the country. Similarly, Acharya Shri Mahashraman ji has entrusted me with the responsibility of being the Chancellor of Jain Vishwabharati, which I am trying to fulfil sincerely.

As far as health is concerned, right now my focus is on the development of Maharaja Agrasen Medical College, Agroha. Apart from Haryana, people from Punjab and Rajasthan also come there for treatment. Our team did a commendable job in the COVID-19 pandemic.

I believe that only a healthy and educated person can contribute to nation building.

Q. AsiaOne Magazine, through its “Greatest Brands and Leaders Asia GCC” series, endeavors to publish the inspirational success stories of top Asian brands and leaders from around the world who have enabled Asia to acquire a special place in the world. This series will highlight the contributions of top Asian leaders, who have contributed in making this world a better place. What is your message to Mr. Rajat Shukal, Global Head and Principal Partner, AsiaOne Magazine and AsiaOne Media Group for this endeavour?

A. I congratulate Mr. Rajat Shukal ji, and your entire team for the success of this series. I also thank you all as the initiative has given me an opportunity to connect with the world community. I am very much sure that I will definitely get an opportunity to learn from all of them. Keep doing positive journalism like this, which changes the lifestyle of people and makes them happy, healthy and prosperous.

Sania Mirza

Born to a sports journalist, Imran Mirza, Sania was introduced to the game by her mother Nasima Mirza. Touted as one of the finest doubles players in the world and without doubt the finest women’s tennis player to have ever represented India, Sania Mirza’s achievements also include laurels like Arjuna Award, WTA Newcomer of the Year, Padma Shri, Rajiv Gandhi Khel Ratna, and the Padma Bhushan to name a few. She has won 13 medals for the country. Sania is the highest ever ranked singles player in the men and women category in the last 30 years and has been ranked as 27th in singles and the world number 1 in doubles.


Her remarkable journey is replete with memorable singles wins over Svetlana Kuznetsova, Marion Bartoli, & Vera Zvonareva. The world number one tennis doubles player acquired this position by recording notable triumphs over the existing toppers of the sport, which included Martina Hingis, Victoria Azarenka, & Dinara Safina. Her powerful strokes and effective style of playing made Sania one of the highest-paid & extremely successful high-profile public figures not only in India but internationally as well. As the first Indian woman to win six Grand Slam titles, she has set really high benchmarks.


Born and brought up in Hyderabad, Sania’s journey began at the age of six at Nizam Club Hyderabad. She received her initial training in tennis by C.K. Bhupathi, father of another tennis ace Mahesh Bhupathi, for the initial training. After obtaining professional tennis training from Sinnet Tennis Academy, Secunderabad, Sania joined the Ace Tennis Academy in the United States. As a junior tennis player, she won 10 singles and 13 doubles titles, which proved that she was meant to make it big in the realm of tennis. Since then, there has been no looking back for the champion. In February 2005, she defeated the ninth-seeded Alona Bondarenko in the A.P. Tourism Hyderabad Open finals. This enabled her to grab a WTA title, making her the first Indian woman to have achieved this feat.


Despite financial pressures and infrastructural constraints, she chartered her distinct course to success owing to her passion for the sport. While 2007 was the golden year for the tennis player as she was ranked the highest in her career as the 27th singles player in the world; the year 2008 brought a brief halt to the player’s career while she represented India in the Summer Olympics. She got eliminated from the singles tournament at the event because of a severe wrist injury. The injury led to her withdrawal from the famed tournaments. Although it was a major injury, she didn’t stop & continued with the doubles championships.


The ‘Pride of the Nation’, Sania Mirza has been featured by various national and international publications. An international magazine has named her as one of the ‘50 Heroes of Asia’. She was also listed among the ET’s ‘33 women who made India proud’. Time magazine listed her as one of the ‘100 Most Influential People in the World’ in 2016. Having played the singles, doubles & mixed doubles formats, she has chosen to share her wealth of knowledge and will join broadcasters Star Sports as an expert to analyze the day-to-day action of the ongoing Wimbledon for fans across the country.

Aliko Dangote

Aliko Dangote GCON (Grand Commander of the Order of the Niger) is a Nigerian billionaire and the founder of Lagos headquartered Dangote Group with the designation of President and Chief Executive. He is also a member of the board of the Corporate Council on Africa and the Steering Committee of the United Nations Secretary-General’s Global Education First Initiative, the Clinton Global Initiative, the McKinsey Advisory Council, and the International Business Council of the World Economic Forum. Though he was born in a wealthy business family of Nigeria – his great grandfather, Alhaji Alhassan Dantata, was the richest African at the time of his death in 1955 – he was so interested in business that even in his primary school he bought cartons of sugar boxes and sold them to make money.

This gentleman’s reputation precedes him, worldwide. The richest in Africa, he also surpassed in 2013 Saudi-Ethiopian billionaire Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi by over $2.6 billion to become the world’s richest person of African descent.


Starting in 1978 as a trader of rice, sugar and cement with a loan of $3000 by a family member, he soon ventured into full-scale manufacturing. Focusing on meeting the basic needs of the Nigerian population by providing local, value-added products and services, he expanded the Dangote Group by leaps and bounds.

Today, he heads the multi-trillion-naira industrial conglomerate that deals in cement manufacturing, sugar refining, salt refining, oil refinery, polysacks, beverages, flour, pasta, seasoning, real estate, telecommunication, steel and fertilizers with a presence in 18 African countries and employing more than 30000 people. In the late 1990s, Dangote forayed into manufacturing consumer goods such as sugar refining and flour milling and then in cement manufacturing. One of his subsidiary companies is listed on the Nigerian Stock Exchange whose market capitalization is accounts for almost 20 percent of the total capitalization of the stock exchange. The visionary leader also signed a contract for the installation of a large underwater offshore pipeline with CNOOC Group.


Dangote takes a no neither easily, nor seriously. In 1990s, he got a yes from the Central Bank of Nigeria to be allowed to manage at cheaper rates their fleet of staff buses through his transport company. In July 2012, he approached the Nigerian Ports Authority and received the rights of an abandoned piece of land on lease to build facilities for his flour company. These approvals are not easy to get, but Dangote is capable of convincing others decisively.


He is passionate about doing everything for the people of Nigeria. He encourages them to invest within the country and keep their profits or rewards with themselves. Dangote’s telecommunications project resulted in building 14,000 kilometers of fibre optic cables to supply in entire Nigeria. For this, he was honored as the leading provider of employment in Nigerian construction industry in 2009.

Acknowledging his extensive efforts towards manufacturing and employment in Nigeria, in 2010, President Goodluck Jonathan appointed him as the Chairman, National Job Creation Committee to assist the government in creating employment opportunities for Nigerians.

As a result of his global impressive contributions, recently in June 2021, he has been honoured with Cameroon’s top civilian award – the Commander of the National Order of Valour.

In 2015, he was also among “50 Most Influential Individuals in the World” list by Bloomberg Markets and also won ‘the Guardian Man of the Year 2015’ award. Additionally, he is the Chairman, National Partnership Committee of Government and Private Sector on Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET); Member, Honorary International Investor Council (HIIC); a Malaria Ambassador; and Founding Board Member and Patron, Private Sector Health Alliance of Nigeria (PHN), thus contributing towards various aspects such as skill development, good governance and reengineering of the economy, to name a few.


In 2013, Alhaji Aliko Dangote, along with six other eminent Nigerians, was conferred Honorary Citizenship of Arkansas State by Governor Mike Beebe, who also declared May 30 every year as Nigeria Day in the US. Dangote is not only a foremost industrialist in Africa, he is equally loved and respected abroad. He is a member of several national and foreign organizations through which he contributes to the growth and development of people of several countries.

He has been quite active in philanthropic activities including the United Nations’ World Food Programme, Clinton Global Initiative, World Economic Forum, United Nations Secretary-General’s Global Education First Initiative, Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, Corporate Council on Africa, and many others thus contributing towards global education and eradication of polio. Dangote entrusted a $3.3 million complex to Bayero University Business School. He also donated 150 fully kitted operational cars to the Nigeria Police Force and 200 housing units to Boko Haram victims – mostly women and children. He was also associated with the board of directors of the Clinton Health Access Initiative. In addition to this, he had contributed N50 million (US$ 500,000) to the National Mosque under the aegis of “Friends of Obasanjo and Atiku” and N200 million to the Presidential Library. In 2014, Dangote had donated N150 million for stopping the spread of Ebola virus.

Moreover, to speed-up the work in health, education, economic empowerment and disaster relief sectors, Dangote made an initial offering of $1.25 billion to the Dangote Foundation which now has become the largest private Foundation in sub Saharan Africa. On behalf of his foundation, he also supports stand-alone projects which have potential for significant social impact and works with state and national governments and national and domestic charities. Recently in 2020, he donated N200 million towards the fight against COVID-19 pandemic.

Parth Parmar

He works as a guiding force behind his employees and constantly motivates them to grow and bring forward something innovative in the interior design industry. Being the director of the company, Mr. Parth Parmar makes sure that all the products manufactured by his firm resonate with luxury and are reasonably priced for its customers. His out-of-the-box ideas have made him a celebrated name in the market.

Mr. Parmar ensures that his clients get products that match international standards. In the last two years, his company participated in several exhibitions and promotional events. With his intense knowledge and work, the company received a few accolades from Acetech-Mumbai, IIID Lucknow, Infrastructure Development Architecture Construction (IDAC) and Indian Green Building Council (IGBC).

PARÉ Innovations Private Limited manufactures one-of-its-kind products in the Indian decor space. Mr. Parmar started the company keeping in mind three major principles: innovation, speed, and growth of stakeholders. A people’s person, he considers employees, distribution partners, customers, suppliers, government, and society as the stakeholders of his company. He acknowledges that each one of them is responsible for the company’s growth and success. Hence, it is the responsibility of the firm to work for their benefits. This outlook shows that Mr. Parmar is a blend of passion and profession.


Mr. Parth Parmar wishes to make India one of the greatest players in the home décor and infrastructure segment. He works consistently to bring world-class interior design products to India that cater to the needs of consumers.

Everything that is manufactured at PARÉ Innovations Private Limited is waterproof and maintenance-free, and imparts a real wood feel to the space. He guarantees it to be a winning product, which can be used in both residential and commercial properties. PARÉ Soffit – Ceiling & Wall System is a revolutionary product that makes spaces luxurious and spacious.

Under Mr. Parmar’s leadership, PARÉ Innovations has launched three groundbreaking product categories, with one being a world‘s first and the other two being India’s first. All of these products are manufactured at the organisation’s cutting-edge manufacturing facility located in Gujarat. Some of these products have been conceptualised, designed, developed, and manufactured for the first time ever by the company, solidifying their position as original and genuine innovators.


An ardent follower of Sri Sri Ravi Shankar Ji, Mr. Parmar takes him to be his inspiration in life. He learnt to have purity in mind and sincerity in his actions by following his teachings. The lessons imparted by the spiritual guru have been instrumental in making him a successful person. He strongly believes that Sri Sri Ravi Shankar ji is the sole reason for his happiness and success, and after knowing him, he began manifesting his dreams and witnessing immense growth in his personal and professional life.

Mr. Parmar is an Indian, and believes in running his organisation on Indian ethos. He is convinced that the true growth of an individual or a company is only possible when they share the responsibility of making society grow. Thus, he gives back to society as a responsible corporate citizen.

Jaya Subramaniam

With a zeal to identify and address unmet needs in global healthcare, Ms. Jaya Subramaniam leveraged her decades of experience in global biopharma to become a founding leader of a successful healthcare analytics start up Analytical Wizards and spearheaded its vision, growth, VC funding and successful exit to a large publicly held global healthcare intelligence entity, Definitive Healthcare in February 2022. She continues on the Executive Leadership Team of Definitive Healthcare, identifying and driving synergies across the integrated entity.

Ms. Subramaniam has an MBA from the Wharton Business School, University of Pennsylvania. She also holds a Bachelor’s and Masters’ in Economics from the prestigious Lady Shri Ram College, Delhi University. She started her career in the CPG industry and worked for a decade in companies like Diageo Plc and its Indian subsidiary, the UB Group. She worked in various positions across corporate strategy, market research, and brand marketing.

Motivated by using her business skills towards a more meaningful purpose, Ms. Subramaniam made a successful transition to biopharma two decades ago. Her cross-industry global experience helped her gain a broader perspective and worldview, enabling out-of-the-box thinking in an industry that was and continues to experience unprecedented pace of change and transformation.

Her diverse experience enabled her to bring a fresh perspective, challenge status quo, and creatively problem-solve to help businesses, organisations, teams, and individuals successfully navigate change, to innovate, transform and succeed in unchartered territory.

In 2017, Ms. Subramaniam partnered with her husband Ram Sharma, Founder and CEO of Analytical Wizards (AW) and his Leadership Team to build a long-term vision and strategic plan for the company and seek VC funding and investment to turbo charge growth and realise its vision. Through 2017-18, she led the Strategic Planning and VC negotiations. In fall of 2018, she formally joined AW on its Board of Directors and on the Executive Leadership team as Chief Strategy Officer. She executed the Strategic Plan and Vision by hiring, growing and mentoring a team of biopharma experts, developing the product roadmaps and analytical platforms and accelerators, and establishing the value proposition of its offerings. The company witnessed unprecedented growth with an enviable client base, including 4 of top 6 pharma and 6 of top 10 biotech companies worldwide.

In February 2022, AW merged with Definitive Healthcare, a publicly listed healthcare intelligence and data provider following a successful acquisition that led to financial success not just for the Founders and Leadership, but also for every single employee. The merger was a great strategic fit for the long-term potential and viability of AW’s vision with immense synergistic potential for the combined entity.

Above all, AW’s analytical accelerators have proven to bring scale, efficiency and accelerated speed to insights, as well as deeper, richer, real-time insights to enable bio-pharma companies to commercialise life-saving drugs faster and bring the right medicine to the right patient at the right time, thereby improving and potentially saving patient lives. So, the company built value for its employees, its eventual buyer, shareholders/investors, clients and to the global healthcare ecosystem.


Ms. Subramaniam is a visionary leader who inspires teams by establishing a meaningful aspirational vision and common purpose with potential transformational benefit for society, industry, clients, and employees alike. She strongly believes in the adage “Find purpose and the means will follow.” As a business leader, she has consistently tried to translate her vision into purpose with a clear business plan that is owned and aligned across every team member.

She aims at hiring good talent with varied skills and experience that can collectively contribute to the larger purpose. She inspires cross-functional teams to achieve incredible success by inculcating a collaborative and innovative culture while striving for excellence within each functional unit. Ms. Subramaniam is highly inspired by her parents and closely witnessed their tremendous professional success and social impact despite coming from humble backgrounds and growing up in pre independence India in the midst of World Wars. They rose above the challenges of living in a country through turbulent times.

Her leadership skills were shaped by her early childhood experiences and exposure to governance, public policy and administration, as well as sensitisation to issues of social inclusion, gender and women’s empowerment. Besides, her parents were in transferable jobs that accorded her an eclectic childhood with lots of travel and learning.

Thanks to her parents, Ms. Subramaniam had the privilege to live, study, and work across cities and have a very cosmopolitan upbringing. This made it possible for her to embrace diversity and change. Today, she has lived, worked and studied across continents, and this diverse experience has played a huge factor in shaping her leadership skills and in her global success. It has also made her witness how change is brought about at the grassroots. Living in different places made her truly value the common thread that connects everyone.


Under her leadership, the company has earned some remarkable accolades. In 2019, it was named one of the Top Predictive Analytics companies by the CIO magazine. In 2020, it was featured in the ‘INC 5000 Fastest Growing Privately-Held Companies in the US’ (ranked 1220 on the annual list of companies with three-year revenue growth of 368%). The same year, it was also awarded the ‘INC 5000 NY Metro Regional Award’ presented to the fastest growing companies. In 2020, it was named the ‘Top AI Solution Provider’ by Retail Tech Media. Enterprise World recognised it for ‘Transforming Healthcare Analytics.’ In 2022, My Tech featured AW among the ‘Top 10 AI’ Healthcare Solution Providers.


Ms. Subramaniam draws inspiration from multiple sources, from her seniors, colleagues, partners and subordinates alike. She strives to learn and imbibe the best from all around, and believes in the ability of ordinary individuals to achieve extraordinary things. According to her, the power of a committed collective team working towards a meaningful purpose is greater than anything else.