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Shareholders Of Tata Sons


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Trust Issues


Controlling Your Wealth From Beyond The GraveHere’s a story from the past:Back in 1936, Shapoorji Pallonji Mistry (grandfather of Cyrus Mistry) acquired around 12.5% of Tata Sons after the death of FE Dinshaw, from his estate. Dinshaw had been a frequent financier for the Tatas and had converted debt to equity to get his shares in Tata Sons. He wanted his shares to go into a trust after his death, but somehow Shapoorji Mistry prevailed upon his managers.And then in a master-stroke Shapoorji acquired another 6% from JRD Tata’s brother Darab, who sold, it is said, to spite his elder sibling, who was hogging the limelight at the Tatas. But Shapoorji’s adventure had to stop there, as the sons of JN Tata Ratanji and Dorabji had already arranged their own holdings, adding up to 80%, into charitable trusts before their deaths. ( JRD and Darab were descendents of Dadabhoy Tata, a partner and cousin of JN Tata’s father Nusserwanji Tata.)

The Tata Trusts are probably the most well known in India.Using trusts, either charitable ones like these or private ones with private beneficiaries, was popular in India till the ’80s to bequeath assets to progeny. Between the 80s and the ’90s, private trusts went through a period of highest taxation and lost their popularity. Today, they seem to be the flavour of the season again. Along with popularity have come services that set up trusts and help manage them. Apart from the tax pressure on trusts being eased in early 2000, some high-profile inheritance drama helped. Read more of this post

Sudha Murthy and JRD Tata


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Sudha Murthy is the wife of N.R. Narayana Murthy,Founder of Infosys.She is the Chairperson of Infosys Foundation.Here is a story I found today.In it she narrates how JRD influenced her life.Enjoy!

“There are two photographs that hang on my office wall. Every day when I enter my office I look at them before starting my day. They are pictures of two old people, one of a gentleman in a blue suit and the other a black-and-white image of a man with dreamy eyes and a white beard.

People have asked me if the people in the photographs are related to me. Some have even asked me, “Is this black-and-white photo that of a Sufi saint or a religious guru?” I smile and reply “No, nor are they related to me. These people made an impact on my life. I am grateful to them.” “Who are they?” “The man in the blue suit is Bharat Ratna JRD Tata and the black-and-white photo is of Jamsetji Tata.” “But why do you have them in your office?” “You can call it gratitude.” Read more of this post

Tata Style Philanthropy


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Here is something I found while surfing today.I found it here http://trak.in/tags/business/2007/06/26/this-is-what-lakshmi-mittal-has-to-say-about-his-competitor/ .The blogger believes the words originate from LN Mittal.In which case it would be high praise indeed for the Tatas from a competitor.Even if the note is authored by someone else it doesn’t detract from the fact that Tata Style Philanthropy is worthy of respect and well worth emulating.The picture above shows Jamshedpur.

“Most of us know Lakshmi Mittal to be the richest person in United Kingdom. We also know him as a Steel Industry Baron who took over Arcelor against all odds. However, more than money and business, he is a great human being and never fails to give credit where it is due, even if it means his own biggest rival.

Here is a note written by Lakshmi Mittal after his recent visit to TISCO: (It is long, but well worth the read)

‘I visited Jamshedpur over the weekend to see for myself an India that is fast disappearing despite all the wolf-cries of people like Narayanamurthy (mentor of Infosys) and his ilk. It is one thing to talk and quite another to do and I am delighted to tell you that Ratan Tata has kept alive the legacy of perhaps India’s finest industrialist J.N. Tata. Something that some people doubted when Ratan took over the House of the Tata’s but in hindsight, the best thing to have happened to the Tata’s is unquestionably Ratan.I was amazed to see the extent of corporate philanthropy and this is no exaggeration.For the breed that talks about corporate social responsibility and talks about the role of corporate India, a visit to Jamshedpur is a must. Go there and see the amount of money they pump into keeping the town going; see the smiling faces of workers in a region known for industrial unrest; see the standard of living in a city that is almost isolated from the mess in the rest of the country. Read more of this post

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