Pallonji Mistry, chairman of Shapoorji Pallonji Group, dies at 93
Business tycoon Pallonji Mistry, Chairman of Shapoorji Pallonji Group, passed away at his Mumbai residence on Monday night. He was 93. Born in a Parsi family in Gujarat, Mistry was credited for the success of the Mumbai-based conglomerate, one of the biggest business firms in India. He also received Padma Bhushan, India's third-highest civilian award, for his contribution as an industrialist in 2016.
Notably, Mistry was one of the oldest billionaires that India has seen. He had a net worth of over $13 billion, as per the latest Forbes data, ranking at 143 globally. Founded in 1865, construction giant Shapoorji Pallonji Group focuses on business segments like engineering and construction, infrastructure, real estate, water, energy, and financial services. The conglomerate has a presence in 50 countries.
Interestingly, Mistry's family is the largest individual shareholder in the Tata Group with an 18.4% holding in it. His younger son, Cyrus Mistry, was also the chairman of the Tata Group from 2012 to 2016. To recall, Cyrus was removed from the post amid a dispute, which was one of the most closely watched corporate battles in India in recent times.
Mistry's elder son, Shapoorji Mistry, is the chairman of the Shapoorji Pallonji And Company Private Limited. He is also survived by his wife, Patsy Perin Dubash, and two daughters, namely Laila Mistry and Aloo Mistry. Aloo is the wife of Ratan Tata's half-brother Noel Tata.
Mistry was born in 1929. He did his schooling at Cathedral & John Cannon School, Mumbai, before heading to Imperial College London for higher studies. He started his career at 18 and worked for his father, Shapoorji Mistry, in their family business. He was called the "Phantom of Bombay House" for his powerful boardroom presence. In 2003, he took Irish citizenship through marriage.
Some remarkable construction works done by the Shapoorji Pallonji Group include the buildings of the Reserve Bank of India, Citibank's India headquarters, SAIL Steel Plant, the Jawahar Lal Nehru Stadium in Delhi, and the Bombay Stock Exchange, among others.