You wouldn't expect the head of Tata Group, India's largest conglomerate, to say the rich are boring. But Ratan Tata comes close. Acting rich doesn't interest him. "I've never had the desire to own a yacht, to flaunt," he says. "It's not really [the point]." Nor does the Prada-wearing class excite him as a marketing opportunity. China and India, with their growing ranks of tycoons, should attract multinational businesses not because of the spare million in a few fat wallets, he argues, but because of the spare change in a billion slim ones. "Everyone is catering to the top of the pyramid," says the 68-year-old at his office in Bombay House, Tata Group's elegant Edwardian headquarters in India's business capital. "The challenge we've given to all our companies is to address a different market. Pare your margins. Create new markets."
Shaking the foundations
Time Asia — June 19, 2006
"We need to be bolder and willing to take bigger risks abroad," Ratan Tata had said to THE WEEK in an interview in May 2005. That was at a time when the Tata group had taken a big leap abroad with acquisitions by Tata Motors and Tata Steel.
The Week — February 8, 2007
ideas: audacious, confident, driven, passionate, daring, had many set backs, courage, determined, international, elegant headquarters, acting rich does not interest him, always looking for a marketing opportunity, risk taker