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What You Didn't Know About Kumar Birla

  By SASHA LALCHANDANI   Jan 23rd 2012 at 6:00AM Lifestyle RATED

Image courtesy: Reuters

Indian industrialist Kumar Mangalam Birla is Chairman of the Aditya Birla Group. He is also Chancellor of the Birla Institute of Technology and Science. Part of the top ten Indian billionaires list, we take a look at some lesser known facts about the business baron.


Car Story:  Not too much is known about this billionaire's cars. But we do know that he loves his BMWs. He owns a 5 series sedan and got special permission to import a bullet proof one at that. This highly customized car was brought to the Birla's all the way from Germany and reportedly costs between Rs 1 to 2 crore.


Jet Setting: In a world where a billionaire is only a true billionaire if he owns a private jet, Kumar Birla owns two. The first is a Cessna Citation and the second a seven-seater Gulf Stream (G100). He spent an estimated $11 million on the seven-seater.


Holiday Hotspot: When you're the chairman of a group as huge as the Aditya Birla Group, a vacation every now and then is essential. Mr Birla then, takes ten days off every year and goes to either London or St Moritz in Switzerland.


Honours: This businessman, with an MBA from the London Business School has several honorary doctorate degrees. In 2010, he was named the CNN-IBN Indian of the Year. With a net worth of $9.2 billion, Kumar Birla has also been listed as the eighth youngest billionaire outside India. The title of Business Leader was conferred upon him by the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh as well.


Home Base: Presently the Birlas have two homes in Mumbai. They have a two floor apartment at the posh location of Malabar Hill. There is also a bungalow on half an acre of land on Carmichael Road. The Carmichael Road residence has joined the homes of other billionaires like Ratan Tata and Mukesh Ambani.


Lineage: Ghanshyam Das Birla, great grandfather of Kumar Birla, once lived in what was known as the Birla House on Albuquerque Road in New Delhi. This 12 bedroom bungalow on the road now known as Tees January Marg, was home to Mahatma Gandhi for a few months. 


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