India's 100 richest are all billionaires; Mukesh Ambani tops

Singapore: For the first time, the 100 richest tycoons in India are all billionaires with Mukesh Ambani topping the league for the eighth consecutive year, according to Forbes.

With a net worth of USD 23.6 billion, up USD 2.6 billion from last year, RIL Chief Mukesh Ambani topped the list for the eighth consecutive year.

Mukesh Ambani

Ambani was followed by Dilip Shanghvi, who got richer this year by USD 4.1 billion. Shanghvi is the new No. 2, after
he displaced steel baron Lakshmi Mittal (USD 15.8 billion), who slipped to the fifth place.

Wipro's Azim Premji moved up one notch to the number three position as his net wealth increased to USD 16.4 billion from USD 13.8 billion previously. Pallonji Mistry, patriarch of construction giant Shapoorji Pallonji Group which is the
biggest shareholder in Tata Sons with a new worth of USD 15.9 billion, was placed in the fourth place.

Forbes said that "good days are here" for the India's 100 Richest, as the top 100 richest Indians are all billionaires
with combined wealth of USD 346 billion, up more than a third from USD 259 billion in 2013. Propelled by the euphoria after the Bharatiya Janata Party's landslide victory in May, the stock market has gained 28 per cent since January, driving the net-worth of the uber-rich people in India.

The biggest dollar gainer is ports magnate Gautam Adani, who jumped 11 spots to 11th rank in the list, adding nearly USD 4.5 billion to his wealth which reached USD 7.1 billion on soaring share prices.

"Shares of Adani's companies started soaring ahead of the elections on hopes of a BJP victory. The gains added close to USD 4.5 billion to his wealth, more than anyone else," Forbes said.

Others in the top 10 include NRI businessmen Hinduja Brothers who were at the sixth position with a net worth of USD 13.3 billion, followed by Shiv Nadar (7th, USD 12.5 billion), Godrej family (8th, USD 11.6 billion), Kumar Birla (9th, USD 9.2 billion) and Sunil Mittal & family (10th, USD 7.8 billion).

As many as 85 of the 89 who returned to the top 100 from last year are wealthier, and several are billionaires for the
first time. Among them are Qimat Rai Gupta (ranked 48, net worth USD 1.95 billion), Chairman of Havells; V G Siddhartha (75, USD 1.27 billion), founder of the Cafe Coffee Day chain; and brothers Harsh Goenka (82, USD 1.18 billion) and Sanjiv Goenka (69, USD 1.4 billion), who run their independent empires and are listed separately.

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