Richest Asian Billionaire Named As Gautam Adani

Richest Asian Billionaire

Richest Asian Billionaire

By Abby Hindle, Halal Incorp

Born in the Indian state of Gujarat in June 1962, Gautam Adani is the wealthiest Asian billionaire and the tenth wealthiest billionaire globally. The Adani Group, a multinational conglomerate, was founded as Adani Exports in 1988 as a commodity export firm and has since diversified into areas such as power generation and transmission, coal, gas, renewable energy, airport operations, food processing and infrastructure amongst others. Adani Group has many listed companies, the most valuable being Adani Green Energy LTD, with shares going up by 77% in recent years.

He is married to Priti Adani, a dentist who also oversees Adani Foundation, a non-profit organisation funded by Adani Group, as managing trustee. They have two children.  

Richest Asian Billionaire

Adani became Asia’s richest person, beating out Mukesh Ambani, in November of 2021. The businessman’s’ net worth doubled in April 2021 from $50.5 billion and as of October 2021 his net worth sat at $74.8 billion. After first entering Forbes list of world billionaires in 2008 worth $9.3 billion, his rise since then has been steady. Adani got his first experience in the area of import and export when his older brother, Mansukhbhai Adani, bought a plastics unit in 1981 and invited Adani to manage his operations.

Adani had previously been enrolled at Gujarat University, studying for a Bachelors’ degree in commerce, only to drop out in his second year. He worked for a time as a diamond sorter before he joined his brother in global trade. He traded Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC), a raw material used for the manufacture of plastics.

Adani used this experience in global trading to start importing Primary Polymers for smaller industries in 1985 and, soon after, to start Adani Exports, the holding company for the Adani Group (later to become known as Adani Enterprises). Adani Exports initially focused on commodity trading, specifically agriculture and power commodities, and expanded into trading textiles and metals in 1991.

Richest Asian Billionaire

When the Gujarat government announced the managerial outsourcing of the Mundra Port in 1995, Adani was able to secure the contract. The Mundra Port is the largest container port in India, handling up to 144.4 million tonnes of cargo between 2020-2021.

In 1995 the first the company set up the first jetty on Mundra Port.  The port provides a base for Adani Group’s trading operations. The company expanded further, establishing a portfolio of infrastructure assets such as mines, ships and power plants globally. The company grew steadily, becoming India’s largest coal importer in 2006 and, after winning the rights to the Orissa mine in 2010, India’s largest private coal mining company. In 2012 the business began focusing specifically on three main areas; resources, logistics and energy. In 2020,

Adani Group acquired a majority stake of 74% in India’s second busiest airport, Mumbai airport following a debt acquisition agreement with GVK group, and Indian conglomerate . They also obtained a fifty year lease on various other Indian airports, such as Guwahati, Jaipur and Mangalore among others, following a concession agreement with Airports Authority of India.

Richest Asian Billionaire

In 1996 the power business branch of the Adani Group, Adani Power, was founded. Adani Group entered into power generation a little later, in 2006, with the acquisition of Abbot Port Point in Australia and Carmichael coal mine in Queensland. They have continued their development in the area of power and electricity since, winning the largest solar bid by Solar Energy Corporation of India, worth $6 billion, in 2020. The project was taken up by Adani Green, the renewable energy branch of Adani Group.

Some actions taken by the company in this area have been controversial, such as the mining and rail project in Carmichael, which was supported by the Australian Government despite pressure from activists due to concern over Adeni Groups previous environmental record. The project was delayed by nine years but commenced operation in 2019. The company continues expanding in all areas; as of 2014 it is India’s largest private power producer.

Richest Asian Billionaire

The Adani Group has six listed companies. First, Adani Exports, which became Adani Enterprises. It is an in-house incubator for Adani Group new business projects that have yet to become self-sustaining. It has ten current subsidiaries involved in such diverse areas as oil, defence and aerospace, cement, and rail infrastructure. Adani Power was developed in 1996. Its purpose is to develop power projects. It has four thermal projects across India, with a combined capacity of 12,450 Mega Watts, making it India’s largest private power generation company.

Likewise, Adani Green Energy, incorporated in January 2015, is the worlds largest solar power developer, with a total capacity of total capacity of 12.3 Giga Watts. Adani Transmission, created in 2013, is the branch of the company that deals with electric power transmission systems. It is also, following the previously established theme, India’s largest private power transmission and distribution network.

The final listed company related to energy is Adani Total Gas, a joint project between Adani Group and TotalEnergies, a French oil and gas company. Finally, there is Adani Ports and SEZ, a private port company (once more, the largest in India). It is a special economic zone in India, with up to ten ports, including Mundra Port.

In 2021, a list was released by Indiaspora, the US-based diaspora body, putting Adani among the top 100 corporate leaders whose Philanthropic actions had had most impact around the world. The Adani Foundation, started in 1996, initially aimed to start developmental projects to bring sustainable growth and development to India, focusing on community health, education, sustainable living and community infrastructure.

Though initially started in Mundra, it now operates in over 18 states, bringing accessible education, healthcare services, potable water, roads and solar panelling to rural areas. They also focus on sustainable livelihood programmes for rural and tribal populations. During the Covid-19 pandemic the foundation also donated around $ 13000000 to Pm Cares Fund, a fund set up for relief efforts against the Covid outbreak and other pandemics.

In addition to this, around $66000 was donated to the International Society for Krishna Consciousness (also known as the Hare Krishna movement) to support emergency food distribution in the National Capital Region (NCR).

The growth of Adani Group has been strong and steady since its inception and, despite the company feeling the effects of the pandemic like everyone else, seems to show no signs of slowing. As of February 2022, mere days before the writing of this article, Adani Group gained around $2 billion due to its joint venture with Wilmar International ltd, Adani Wilmar, India’s largest edible oil maker. If things continue on this favourable trajectory, Adani may outgrow his position as only the ninth richest man in the world sooner or later.

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