Kerala has produced many successful entrepreneurs and businessmen who mastered their line of business and became the masters in their respective sectors. Let’s see the list of top most successful Entrepreneurs from Kerala who are an inspiration to those who aim high in business.
1. RETAIL: MA Yusuf Ali:
A businessman who hails from Thrissur, Yusuf Ali M.A is the chairman and Managing Director of LuLu Group International that owns the Lulu Hypermarket chain worldwide and LuLu International Shopping Mall. LuLu Group International is the employer of largest number of Indians outside India. He is someone who believes that business is not just about money, products or services but all about people. The Lulu Group has diversified into many areas under the leadership of MA Yusuf Ali, retail being the most prominent of them.
2. INFRASTRUCTURE: Ravi Pillai
Ravi Pillai, Chairman of RP Group of Companies hails from Kollam. Pillai has his business in countries including India, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, Qatar, and Bahrain, and has interests in construction, hospitality, steel, cement, and oil and gas industries. Known as the “Ambani of the Gulf”, Mr. Ravi Pillai is the founder MD of the construction giant Naseer S Al Hajri Corporation, based at Bahrain. With more than 60,000 people working for him, Mr. Pillai employs the biggest Indian workforce in Saudi.
3. REAL ESTATE: PNC Menon
PNC Menon is the chairman of Sobha group of companies and hails from Thrissur. He developed an interior design company in Oman and later started the Sobha group of Companies in Bangalore. The founder and chairman of Sobha Group, a construction and real estate player in the UAE, and chairman emeritus of India-listed real estate developer Sobha Limited, he has diversified his business into newer sectors that include hospitality, branded furniture and lighting, real estate consultancy services and real estate fund.
4. EDUCATION: Sunny Varkey
Born in 1957, Sunny Varkey is a Dubai-based education entrepreneur who is the founder and chairman of the educational management firm GEMS Education, which is the largest operator of private kindergarten-to-grade-12 schools in the world with more than 250 schools worldwide. He is also the chairman of the business organization the Varkey Group, and the founder and trustee of the philanthropic Varkey Foundation.
5. TEXTILE & JEWELLERY INDUSTRY: TS. Kalyanaraman
T. S. Kalyanaraman Iyer is an Indian businessman, entrepreneur, and the chairman and managing director of Kalyan Jewellers and Kalyan Developers with a presence in India, the UAE, and Kuwait. Kalyan group collectively has holdings in three companies i.e. Kalyan Silks (Kalyan Silks, Kalyan Sarees, and Kalyan Collections), Kalyan Jewellers, and most recently Kalyan Developers. Under his dynamic leadership, Kalyan Jewellers has witnessed tremendous growth and has opened many shops in India and abroad.
6. FINANCE: M C George Muthoot
M C George Muthoot is an Indian entrepreneur and businessman who, with his 3 brothers runs Muthoot Finance, India's leading lender against gold. The business is spread into finance, education, IT, healthcare, plantations, and travel and tourism.
7. IT: Kris Gopala Krishnan
Kris Gopalakrishnan is the co-founder of Infosys and the Chairman of Axilor Ventures a company supporting and funding start-ups. He was the president of India's apex industry chamber Confederation of Indian Industry for the year 2013-14.
8. HEALTH CARE: Azad Moopen
The chairman of Dubai-Headquartered Aster DM Healthcare LLC, Azad Moopen is an Indian healthcare entrepreneur, physician, and philanthropist. He is also the chairman and MD of Aster DM Healthcare, a healthcare conglomerates in the Middle East and India.
9. PHARMACEUTICALS: Arun Kumar
The CEO of Strides Arcolab, a pharma company headquartered in Bangalore, is engaged in the development, manufacture, and marketing of pharmaceutical products for regulated and emerging markets. The pharmaceutical company has seven manufacturing facilities including four US Food and Drug Administration approved facilities.
10. OUT OF HOME ADVERTISING: MISBAH SALAM:
Based in Kochi, Misbah Salam is the CEO and founder of CHAMS Branding Solutions, a communication house specialized in advertising, media, and strategy. An integrated media solution provider, CHAMS is Kerala’s premium fleet branding provider with an exclusive license for inter-state Scania, Volvo, and other premium low floor buses. He is on the mission to help entrepreneurs and enterprises to reach business success through path-breaking solutions. He has built an eco-system of services to help elevate businesses to the next level.
Entrepreneurship is no cakewalk but involves too many challenges and obstacles. Entrepreneurship is not always about money, but also about taking risks and challenges to do something different and incredible to bring a change in society. Entrepreneurship is about empowering oneself and others around.
All these entrepreneurs from Kerala from different sectors who have chosen this path have changed the lives of many and are truly inspiring.