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Entrepreneur Success Stories --> Scrap Metal Trader To The Largest Integrated Producer of Zinc

Businessman Anil Agarwal’s story is another a rags to riches story. He started out in his late teens as a scrap metal trader from Bihar. Today, he’s a billionaire who has almost achieved his ambition of being a key player in the global metals market. His firm, the $1.8 billion Vedanta Resources, is listed on the London Stock Exchange and Agarwal operates from a swanky office in London’s exclusive Mayfair district.

Mr. Agarwal has transformed Vedanta Resources into the largest integrated producer of zinc and the second-largest producer of aluminum in India. Under his able leadership, the group adopted the strategy of inorganic growth and with its recent acquisition of Sesa Goa, Vedanta has become the largest private sector producer-exporter of iron ore in India. Mr. Agarwal plans to venture into new segments such as power generation and mining. Having acquired an allotment of coal mines and reserves of more than 320 million tonnes, the company targets an installed capacity of 10,000 MW by 2012.

Mr. Agarwal lays a great deal of emphasis on social welfare. Vedanta runs literacy and healthcare camps in 70 villages across Rajasthan under an integrated village development programme. The company also provides free daily meals to 200,000 children in Bhilwara, Udaipur and Chittorgarh in association with the Rajasthan government and the Naandi Foundation. Sterlite, a subsidiary of Vedanta, has signed a MoU with Apollo Hospitals, pledging its support to conduct surgeries on 50 children suffering from congenital paediatric heart disease.

“Nobody believed me when I took Vedanta to LSE,” says Agarwal. “Many were scared to put money in a company with a promoter with little education. My bio-data was scanned and auditors did 150 due diligence checks.” Gilberton was fired three months later when it transpired that he was advising a Russian rival, but with Vedanta’s listing, Anil Agarwal arrived on the world stage in style: enigmatic and controversial.

His relentless pursuit of the right people brought in P. Chidambaram (before he became India’s finance minister), former Indian ambassador to the US, Naresh Chandra, and former KPMG chairman, Michael Fowle, to the board of Sterlite Industries.

Walking around the Nariman Point business district, Agarwal stops to talk to a sandwichwalla in a Bihari dialect, asking about his family in the village; the street vendor in turn asks him about the Sterlite stock price. In this corner of urban India, both migrants from Bihar have, in Bollywood parlance, made the long journey from zero to hero.

Says Agarwal: “I want to spend 20% of my time on philanthropy, building lasting institutions the way American industrialists have done. That’s my passion now.”

Recently Vedanta had provided relief material worth Rs. 2 crore to the flood affected people of North Bihar.

This post first appeared on Megatrendz, please read the originial post: here

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Entrepreneur Success Stories --> Scrap Metal Trader To The Largest Integrated Producer of Zinc


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