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Indians emerge stronger in rattled rich list

business Updated: Feb 04, 2009 22:09 IST
Sandeep Singh

With the global recession depressing all valuations, Indians as a group left everybody behind in the Forbes list of richest chief executives of 2009. Four of them (three heading Indian companies) made it to the top 10 in the list, which was released on Wednesday

The estranged Ambani brothers gained in rankings even after they lost more than $13 billion from their combined wealth.

While Mukesh Ambani with an accumulated wealth of $16.8 billion climbed three steps to occupy the third spot after Warren Buffet of Berkshire Hathaway and Lawrence Ellison of Oracle, Lakshmi Niwas Mittal slipped two steps to hold on to the position of the fourth richest CEO in the world. He had an accumulated wealth of $ 13.2 billion.

Anil Ambani moved up from the seventh position last year to become the sixth richest chief executive worldwide with a wealth of $9 billion.

Sunil Bharti Mittal replaced Azim Premzi of Wipro to occupy the ninth position with total wealth of $ 6.9 billion. Sunil Mittal’s Bharti Airtel has lost only 32 per cent of its share value over the past one year which is a strong performance when looked at the steep fall in share values of companies globally.

Even as the world markets crashed and the benchmark index at the Bombay Stock Exchange, Sensex, fell by 51 per cent over the past one year, the richest Indians seem to be holding better on slippery grounds as compared to the others in the world.

As Mukesh Ambani climbed the chart, the promoters stake in Reliance Industries went up from 44.8 per cent to 49.03 per cent.

Warren Buffet tops the list with a total wealth of $35.9 billion, which is almost two times the wealth of the second richest chief executive, Lawrence Ellison who has a wealth of $19.7 billion.