Cyrus Mistry has been chosen to be the successor of Ratan Tata as chairman of Tata Sons, the holding company of Tata, which owns Jaguar Land Rover Group. Ratan Tata, who is now 72, intends to retire in 2012. It can be recalled that in 2008, Tata bought Jaguar Land Rover from Ford Motor Co. for $2.5 billion. Mistry, who serves as the managing director of Shapoorji Pallonji group, which holds interests in construction, real estate, infrastructure and textiles, and a director of Tata Sons, was originally named as the deputy chairman of the holding company.
Ratan Tata is set to retire in December 2012 and Mistry will promptly take over by then. If the last name is familiar, that’s because Cyrus Mistry is the son of Pallonji Mistry. Their family has an 18% stake in Tata Sons, which makes it its biggest individual shareholder. Mistry, who is 43 yeas old, possesses degrees in engineering and management from Imperial College, London, as well as from the London Business School. In a statement, Ratan Tata said that Cyrus P. Mistry’s appointment as deputy chairman of Tata Sons is a “good and far-sighted choice.” He said that since August 2006, Mistry had served on Tata Sons’ board where he stood out with the “quality and caliber of his participation, his astute observations and his humility.”
Ratan Tata, who has training as an architect, took the helm of the firm in 1991. He managed the company as it expanded with more than 35 acquisitions overseas, two of which are Corus Group Plc and Jaguar Land Rover. The founder of the Tata Group is Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata, who is the great grandfather of Ratan Tata. In 1868, a textile-trading business was opened. It then established the first steel mill and hydroelectric plant in India.