More NRIs figure in new Forbes list
Three more in the list of 400 richest Americans are Bharat Desai, Amar Gopal Bose and Kavitark Ram Shriram.Updated: Sep 21, 2007, 23:12 IST
Bharat Desai, founder of leading IT and ITeS firm Syntel, and his family have joined acoustics pioneer Amar Gopal Bose and Google founder-director Kavitark Ram Shriram as the only Indian origin persons to figure in Forbes' list of the 400 richest Americans.
Desai and family have been ranked 286th with a fortune of $1.7 billion in the 2007 list released on Thursday.
However, both Bose and Shriram, who shared the 242nd post last year, went down the list and now share the 271st position though their respective personal fortunes went up from $1.5 billion to $1.8 billion.
Born to an accountant in Kenya, Desai, now 54, moved to India at the age of 11. He passed out from the Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai, before doing his MBA from the University of Michigan.
He founded Syntel in 1988 along with his wife Neerja.
"I'm genetically not wired to be an employee," Forbes quoted him as saying.
Of Bose, the magazine wrote: "Sultan of sound formed firm 43 years ago, yet today it thrives on the latest in iPod speaker docks, home theater systems, noise-killing headphones."
"He started repairing radios in high school to help the family after WWII hurt his father's import business. Earned PhD in electrical engineering from MIT, stayed on faculty. Began research in hi-fi sound. Founded Bose Corp 1964; first contracts with NASA, US military, to improve radio communications. Built brand on groundbreaking loudspeaker design. Owns 60 per cent stake; wears nametag to office so employees know who he is. Enjoys badminton. Will leave fortune to independent research institute."
Forbes described Shriram as an Indian-born financier who created shop bot Junglee, which was later sold to Amazon in 1998.
"Worked for Netscape, Amazon before creating venture firm Sherpalo in 2000. Early investor, board member of Google has sold more than 3 million shares since 2004 public offering; still owns 1.7 million shares worth $870 million," it said.
Shriram today backs Indian and American tech outfits 24/7 Customer, Frontline Wireless and Zazzle.com.
Owner of Indian job site Naukri.com, Shriram sold off online classifieds site StumbleUpon.com to Ebay earlier this year.
This year's list is again headed by Microsoft founder Bill Gates with a fortune of $59 billion.