Kumar Mangalam Birla
Birla in 2019
Born (1967-06-14) 14 June 1967 (age 57)
Alma materUniversity of Mumbai (BCom)
London Business School (MBA)
TitleChairman, Aditya Birla Group (heir)
Neerja Birla
(m. 1989)
Children3 (including Ananya Birla, Aryaman Birla)
Parent(s)Aditya Vikram Birla and Rajashree Birla
RelativesSee Birla family
AwardsPadma Bhushan (2023)

Kumar Mangalam Birla (born 14 June 1967) is an Indian billionaire industrialist, philanthropist, and the chairman of the Aditya Birla Group, one of the largest conglomerates in India. He is the chancellor of the Birla Institute of Technology & Science, Pilani[1] and ex-chairman of Indian Institute of Management Ahmedabad.[2] According to Forbes, he has an estimated net worth of US$23 billion, as of March 2024 making him the 6th richest person in India.[3]

Birla took over as chairman of the Aditya Birla Group in 1995, at the age of 28, following the death of his father Aditya Vikram Birla.[4][5] During his tenure as chairman, the group's annual turnover has increased from US$2 Billion in 1995 to US$45 billion in 2021.[6] Today, the group is present in 36 countries across six continents with over 50% of its revenues coming from overseas operations.[7]

Early life and education

A fourth generation member of the Birla Family from Pilani, Jhunjhunu, Rajasthan Kumar Birla was born in Kolkata and grew up in a joint family in Mumbai with his parents Aditya Vikram Birla and Rajashree Birla and younger sister Vasavadatta Birla.[3][8] He did his high school from Sydenham College of Commerce and Economics and a bachelor's degree from H.R. College of Commerce and Economics of the University of Mumbai. He later studied at London Business School and was awarded Master of Business Administration from University of London in 1992. He is also an honorary fellow at LBS.[1] He is a chartered accountant from Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).[9]



In 1995, Kumar Mangalam Birla took over the family business and consolidated all the group companies under the brand – Aditya Birla Group (ABG).[10] Birla acquired Indian Aluminum Company (INDAL) in 2000.[11] Then in 2003, Hindalco, acquired Nifty Copper Mines in Australia, while the Aditya Birla Group acquired the Mount Gordon Copper mines in Australia.[12][13] Next year in 2004, Birla acquired a majority stake in L&T cement, which was later renamed UltraTech Cement.[14] In the same year, the Birla-led group's flagship Hindalco Industries announced a merger with all the businesses of Indian Aluminium Company (Indal).[15]

In 2007, Birla spearheaded the purchase of Atlanta-based Novelis Inc, which was the world's leading producer of aluminium rolled products, by Aditya Birla Group's flagship Hindalco.[16] After five years in 2012, Birla's Aditya Birla Nuvo Ltd. acquired Future Group's Pantaloon Retail Limited in India. [17] In 2013, Aditya Birla Chemicals, spearheaded by Birla, acquired the chlor-alkali and phosphoric acid divisions of Solaris Chemtech Industries in India.[18]

Birla's name surfaced in Indian coal allocation case, which traced its origin to the allocation of coal blocks between 2004 and 2009.[19] In 2014, CBI filed closure report against Birla.[20] Since 2015, the Aditya Birla Group consolidated its branded apparel business under its lifestyle retail firm Pantaloons Fashion and Retail India Ltd. and renamed it as Aditya Birla Fashion & Retail, creating India's top branded clothing company by revenues and number of sales outlets. [21]


By 2016, Kumar Birla launched a new logo for the Aditya Birla Group.[22] In June 2017, UltraTech Cement, chaired by Birla, completed the acquisition of Jaiprakash Associates' six cement plants along with five grinding units.[23] In the same year, Birla revived Applause Entertainment, a media, content and IP creation studio with a focus on creating premium digital drama series. Sameer Nair, ex-CEO of Balaji Telefilms, heads the venture, part of the Aditya Birla Group.[24]

After that in 2018, the Aditya Birla Group owned Idea Cellular was merged with Vodafone India to create India's largest telecom service provider – Vodafone Idea Ltd. Also in 2018 under Birla's guidance, UltraTech Cement acquired the cement business of Century Textiles while Binani Cement became a wholly owned subsidiary of UltraTech Cement.[25] [26] In 2018, Birla led Novelis entered into an agreement to acquire Aleris Corporation. The deal was closed for 2.8 bn dollars in 2020.[27] Under Birla's leadership, Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail (ABFRL) acquired the Jaypore brand and bought 51% stake in Finesse International Design that runs the designer wear label Shantanu & Nikhil in 2019.[28] In 2020, Walmart owned Flipkart acquired a 7.8% stake in Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail by making an investment of INR 1,500 crore in the company. [29]

By 2021, Grasim industries, a flagship company of the global conglomerate Aditya Birla Group, entered the paints business with an investment of INR 5,000 crore over three years. [30] Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail Limited (ABFRL) entered into an agreement to buy a 51% stake in the designer brand Sabyasachi. Later that year, Birla led ABFRL entered into a partnership with designer Tarun Tahiliani. ABFRL also partnered with Authentic Brands Group to take on Reebok's operations in India and build India's leading sports athletic lifestyle brand. [31]

Since August 2021, Birla stepped down as non-executive Chairman of telecom firm Vodafone Idea, formed by the 2018 merger between his Idea Cellular and Vodafone India.[32] [33] In January 2022, ABFRL acquired 51% stake in House of Masaba Lifestyle.[34]


Birla has received several awards, including the International Advertising Association's "CEO of the Year Award" in 2016; the US India Business Council's "Global Leadership Award" in 2014; Economic Times "Business Leader Award" in 2003 and 2013; Forbes India Leadership Award – Flagship Award "Entrepreneur of the Year 2012; NDTV Profit Business Leadership Awards 2012, "Most Inspiring Leader"; CNBCTV18 IBLA "Business Leader for Taking India Abroad 2012"; CNN-IBN "Indian of the Year Award 2010"; JRD Tata "Leadership Award 2008"; NDTV's "Global Indian Leader of the Year 2007".[35]

An educationist, Birla is the Chancellor of Birla Institute of Technology & Science (BITS) and BITS School of Management (BITSoM) also BITS Law School (BITSLaW) . He is chairman of IIT Delhi, IIM Ahmedabad and chairman of the Rhodes India Scholarship Committee for Oxford University. He serves on the London Business School's Asia Pacific Advisory Board and is an honorary fellow of the London Business School.[36]

Board memberships and affiliations

Honors and awards

Year Name Awarding Organisation Ref.
2001 Outstanding Business Man of the Year National HRD Network [43]
2003 The Business Leader of the Year The Economic Times [44]
2003 Business Man of the Year Business India [45]
2004 Young Global Leader World Economic Forum (Davos) [46]
2004 Doctor of Literature (Honoris causa) Banaras Hindu University [47]
2005 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year – India Ernst & Young [48]
2007 Global Indian Leader of the Year NDTV [49]
2008 JRD Tata Corporate Leadership Award AIMA [50]
2008 Doctor of Literature SRM University [51]
2011 GQ Business Leader of the Year Condé Nast India Pvt. Ltd. [52]
2012 Entrepreneur of the Year Forbes India Leadership Award (FILA) [53]
2012 Most Inspiring Leader NDTV [54]
2012 Business Leader for Taking India Abroad CNBCTV18 [55]
2012 Global Business Leader Award NASSCOM [56]
2012 Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) Visvesvaraya Technological University [57]
2013 The Business Leader of the Year The Economic Times [58]
2013 Positioned the fourth Most Powerful CEO Economic Times' Corporate India's Definitive Power posting of 100 CEOs [59]
2014 Inducted as an Honorary Member Rotary Club of Mumbai [60]
2016 CEO of the Year International Advertising Association [61]
2017 Outstanding Businessman of the Year CNBC-TV18 – IBLA [62]
2017 The GIL Visionary Leadership Award Frost & Sullivan [63]
2019 Global Asian Award ABLF [64]
2021 Global Entrepreneur of the Year' in business transformation The Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE) [65]
2023 Padma Bhushan Government of India [66]


As per the EdelGive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2021, Kumar Mangalam Birla and his family ranked fourth on the philanthropy list with donations mostly to the healthcare sector.[67] In 2020, the Aditya Birla Group contributed Rs. 500 crores towards COVID relief measures. This included a contribution of Rs. 400 crores to the PM-CARES fund.[68]

Kumar Mangalam Birla has created a 15 million pound endowed scholarship programme to support 10 full-time MBA candidates every year at the London Business School. The BK Birla Scholars Programme is named after Birla's late grandfather Basant Kumar Birla. This scholarship programme is the largest endowed scholarship gift to a European business school.[69]

The Birla family has built schools and temples around the India, including BITS Pilani and Birla Mandirs.[70][71]

See also


  1. ^ a b "Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla – Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group". Archived from the original on 10 November 2012. Retrieved 27 December 2016.
  2. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla appointed as new chairman of IIM-A". The Indian Express. 23 October 2016.
  3. ^ a b "Forbes Profile: Kumar Birla". Forbes.com. Retrieved 25 March 2023.
  4. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla History Maker Founder of Aditya Birla Group". APHerald [Andhra Pradesh Herald].
  5. ^ "I had no choice but to grow up fast: Kumar Mangalam Birla".
  6. ^ "Aditya Birla Group: Of challenges and opportunities". Business Standard. 24 January 2013. Retrieved 25 July 2022.
  7. ^ "Aditya Birla Group invests undisclosed sum in Zand in UAE". Economic Times. 15 February 2022. Retrieved 25 July 2022.[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ "The story of the first couple of the Birla empire". Rediff.com. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  9. ^ "Mr. Kumar Mangalam Birla". abg.com.
  10. ^ "Kumar Mangalam: The biggest Birla". Rediff. 19 September 2005. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  11. ^ "Milestones – Aditya Birla Group". abg.com. Retrieved 5 December 2022.
  12. ^ "Hindalco to acquire Nifty copper mine in Australia". The Times of India. 24 January 2003. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  13. ^ "Birla Copper Buys Aussie Mining Firm". Financial Express. 25 January 2003. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  14. ^ "L&T Cement is now UltraTech Cement". The Hindu Businessline. 14 October 2004. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  15. ^ "Indal's metals businesses to be merged with Hindalco". The Economic Times. 24 August 2004. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  16. ^ "Hindalco buys US-based Novelis Inc for $6 billion". Hindustan Times. 17 February 2007. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  17. ^ "Aditya Birla to buy Pantaloons retail chain". Livemint. 1 May 2012. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  18. ^ "Aditya Birla Chem to acquire Solaris Chemtech unit". Livemint. 31 May 2013. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  19. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla embroiled in Coalgate case with CBI filing 14th FIR". financialexpress.com. 16 October 2013.
  20. ^ "CBI files closure report against Kumar Mangalam Birla in coal block allocation scam". m.businesstoday.in. 29 August 2014.
  21. ^ "Aditya Birla Group to merge apparel business units". Livemint. 4 May 2015. Retrieved 1 March 2022.[permanent dead link]
  22. ^ "Aditya Birla Group logo gets a young makeover". The Times of India. 10 September 2016. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  23. ^ "UltraTech completes acquisition of Jaiprakash group cement business". The Times of India. 29 June 2017. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  24. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla revives Applause Entertainment for content play". Livemint. 17 August 2017. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  25. ^ "UltraTech to buy Century's cement business in Rs 8,621 crore deal". The Times of India. 21 May 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  26. ^ "Binani Cement becomes UltraTech's subsidiary". The Hindu Businessline. 21 November 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  27. ^ "Hindalco's subsidiary Novelis completes $2.8 bn acquisition of Aleris". Business Standard. 14 April 2020. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  28. ^ "Aditya Birla Fashion and Retail set to expand Jaypore, Shantanu & Nikhil brand". Livemint. 10 August 2019. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  29. ^ "Flipkart to invest Rs 1,500 crore in Aditya Birla Fashion & Retail". Economic Times. 23 October 2020. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  30. ^ "Grasim approves Rs 5,000-crore capex for paints business". Economic Times. 28 August 2021. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  31. ^ "ABFRL planning portfolio of up to 30 internet first brands". Economic Times. 16 February 2022. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  32. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla steps down from Vodafone Idea board after stake offer". Business Standard. 5 August 2021. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  33. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla: As acquisitive as ever". Fortune India. 24 September 2018. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
  34. ^ "Birla has the best wedding suits stacked up and he wants them displayed on your phone". Business Insider. 4 February 2022. Retrieved 1 March 2022.
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  36. ^ "London Business School Honours Mr Kumar Mangalam Birla". Businesswireindia.com. Retrieved 6 February 2019.
  37. ^ "BITS Pilani to invest ₹1,500 cr to set up B-school in Mumbai". Livemint. 28 January 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  38. ^ "BITSoM to collaborate with London Business School for global immersions, executive education". Economic Times. 19 May 2021. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  39. ^ a b "Kumar Mangalam Birla, a top-notch industry man with a passion to educate". Hindustan Times. 24 November 2019. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  40. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla named new chairman of IIT Delhi Board". Hindustan Times. 21 January 2016. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  41. ^ "Kumar Birla, Premji on RBI central board". Hindustan Times. 19 January 2013. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  42. ^ "Sebi notifies strict amendments to insider trading regulations". Financial Express. 23 February 2002. Retrieved 26 May 2022.
  43. ^ "Times of India". The Times of India. 9 September 2001.
  44. ^ "Times of India". The Times of India. 16 September 2003.
  45. ^ "Economic Times". 22 December 2003.
  46. ^ "IndiaOnline".
  47. ^ "The Hindu Group".
  48. ^ "Time of India". The Times of India. 12 November 2005.
  49. ^ "ndtv.com".
  50. ^ "AIMA Website".
  51. ^ "SRM University Website". Archived from the original on 29 October 2021. Retrieved 12 October 2021.
  52. ^ "GQ India". 29 September 2011.
  53. ^ "Forbes India".
  54. ^ "NDTV Profit".
  55. ^ "India Times". 15 October 2013.
  56. ^ "NASSCOM".
  57. ^ "Times of India". The Times of India. 9 April 2012.
  58. ^ "Economic Times". 26 September 2013.
  59. ^ "Most Powerful CEOs 2013: What the 2030 list may look like". The Economic Times. 13 July 2013.
  61. ^ "K M Birla, Bharat Patel felicitated at ad awards show".
  62. ^ "CNBC-TV18 hosts 13th edition of India Business Leader Awards; Kumar Mangalam Birla named Outstanding Businessman of the Year". 7 April 2018.
  63. ^ "The Hindu Business Online". 11 September 2017.
  64. ^ "Kumar Mangalam Birla conferred ABLF Global Asian award". 7 November 2019.
  65. ^ Dilipkumar, Bhavya (16 December 2021). "Kumar Mangalam Birla receives Global Entrepreneur of the Year Award from TiE". The Economic Times.
  66. ^ "Full list of 2023 Padma awards". The Hindu. 25 January 2023. ISSN 0971-751X. Retrieved 26 January 2023.
  67. ^ "EdelGive Hurun India Philanthropy List 2021 Top 10 most generous people in India". Moneycontrol. 28 October 2021. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  68. ^ "Covid-19: Aditya Birla Group donates Rs 500 crores in PM-CARES fund". India Today. 4 April 2020. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  69. ^ Gaur, Vatsala (11 July 2019). "London Business School gets a 15 million pound endowed scholarship gift from KM Birla to honour BK Birla's legacy". Economic Times. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  70. ^ "Explained: Why are top business leaders betting big on education institutes?". Moneycontrol. Retrieved 24 January 2022.
  71. ^ "B.K. Birla: The conscious capitalist with nationalism at heart". Moneycontrol. 5 July 2019. Retrieved 24 January 2022.