Bloomberg News

India’s Rich Led by Mukesh Ambani Lose $59 Billion, Forbes Says

October 27, 2011

Oct. 27 (Bloomberg) -- India’s rich, led by billionaire Mukesh Ambani, lost $59 billion in the past year as Asia’s worst-performing currency and sliding stocks eroded 20 percent of their wealth, Forbes magazine said.

The combined assets of India’s 100 wealthiest people slumped to $241 billion from $300 billion a year ago, the magazine said on its website. Ambani, 54, chairman of Reliance Industries Ltd. that owns the world’s biggest refining complex, topped the list for the fourth straight year. His net worth sank 16 percent to $22.6 billion, according to Forbes.

The rupee lost 9.7 percent this year as investors pulled funds out of emerging markets on dimming global economic prospects. The BSE India Sensitive Index of local shares slid 15.7 percent this year as the central bank boosted interest rates seven times to a three-year high to fight inflation, boosting borrowing costs for businesses.

Mukesh Ambani’s younger brother, Anil, was the biggest loser in dollar terms, with $7.4 billion less than last year. He failed to make the top 10 for the first time since his 2004 debut, according to Forbes.

ArcelorMittal Chairman Lakshmi Mittal was the second- richest Indian with $19.2 billion, down 26 percent from a year earlier. Wipro Ltd. Chairman Azim Premji ranked third with a net worth of $13 billion after donating $2 billion of shares to a trust in December to fund philanthropic ventures. Brothers Shashi and Ravi Ruia, whose Essar Group has interests in oil refining, steel and power generation, were in the fourth place with $10.2 billion.

--Editors: Anil Varma, Sam Nagarajan

To contact the reporter on this story: Natalie Obiko Pearson in Mumbai at npearson7@bloomberg.net.

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Reed Landberg at landberg@bloomberg.net.


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