November 24th, 2011
Econintersect: In what might appear to be a nepotistic move, Cyrus Mistry (pictured), the son of 18.5% Tata Group shareholder billionaire Pallonji Mistry, has been named chairman-to-be of Tata Sons, which controls the Tata Group conglomerate. The relationship between Cyrus and the retiring chairman, Ratan Tata, is also familial, since Cyrus’ sister is married to Ratan’s half-brother. The chairman of Tata Sons is also the chairman of Tata Group. The succession will be completed in December, 2012. The announcement today (November 24) ended a year-long search for Ratan's successor.
Follow up:According to The Times of India:
Several factors are said to have worked in Cyrus Mistry's favour: his age; the fact that his family holds the largest single equity block of 18.4% (outside of the Trusts) in Tata Sons; the tradition of every chairman of the group so far being a Parsi; his chemistry with Ratan Tata; his understated style; strong operational experience combined with financial acumen; and his Indian-cum-international outlook.
Cyrus Mistry, who is 43, is credited with scaling up and diversifying Shapoorji Pallonji Group, one of India's most valuable private enterprises.
For the 13 months remaining until he replaces Ratan, Cyrus will be deputy chairman, starting immediately. Cyrus received his education in the UK, with a degree in engineering from the Imperial College of Science, Technology and Medicine in London, and a master’s degree in management from the London Business School.
Hat tip to Sanjeev Kulkarni.