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Meet the new boss

A director of Tata Sons since 1996, he loves golf, dotes on cars and hates socialising

Shibangi Das  |  Mumbai 

Cyrus Pallonji Mistry, 43, currently the Deputy Chairman of has been a director of since 2006. Was appointed as Deputy Chairman in November 2011. Will be taking over the reins at the conglomerate's mantle on December 28, 2012, when retires.

Family background

  • Youngest son of Irish-Parsi construction magnate Pallonji Mistry, which will make him the first non-Indian national (gave up Indian citizenship in 2003, currently an Irish citizen) to head
  • Belongs to a family with a rich entrepreneurial legacy dating back to the turn of the previous century.
  • Mistry's grandfather first bought shares in in the 1930s. The stake which currently stands at 18.5% is owned by Mistry's father, who is the largest single shareholder in a firm mostly controlled by trusts.
  • Has two sisters, one of whom -- Aloo -- is married to Noel Tata, the half-brother of
  • Among others, his grandfather's construction firm, Shapoorji Pallonji Construction Pvt Ltd (SPCL) has also built the Reserve Bank of India, and buildings at Fort, and the new State headquarters at Nariman Point in Mumbai.


  • Studied at the Cathedral & John Connon School in Mumbai.
  • Graduated from Imperial College, London with a BE in civil engineering
  • Holds a master of science in management from London Business School
  • Fellow of the Institution of Civil Engineers

Career outside Tata Sons

  • On becoming an engineer, Cyrus plunged into the family-owned construction business and based on his father's mandate grew it, mainly in the West Asian region. The group's business grew from a turnover of $20 million to approximately $1.5 billion in the years that he was involved in it.
  • Received his big break when the group acquired construction company Afcons Infrastructure, when India was witnessing a construction boom. Was involved in the construction of
  • Has been serving as Chairman of the Board of the Rs 15,000-crore Shapoorji Pallonji Group and Afcons Infrastructure Limited, among others.
  • Has been a non-executive director of Forbes Gokak Limited since June 23, 2003 and founding member of Construction Federation of India.
  • Trustee of Breach Candy Hospital, Mumbai and on the board of Imperial College India Foundation.

Career at Tata Sons

  • Got the chance to join the board of in 2005, a year after his father retired as director and has been serving in the capacity of a director of since September 2006.
  • Has served as a Director of Limited between September 1990 and October 2009 and was Director of Tata Power till September 2006.
  • Was named Deputy Chairman as a result of unanimous vote of Board of Directors and selection committee on November 23, 2011. Beat the likes of Noel Tata, PepsiCo Chairperson Indra Nooyi, former Vodafone CEO Arun Sarin, former CEO of Citigroup Vikram Pandit and former head of Unilever India M S Banga to grab the top job.
  • Being looked at to rev up some of the flagship of the Rs 4.2 lakh crore salt-to-steel conglomerate.
  • Has promised to legally disassociate himself from the management of his family businesses to avoid any issue of conflict of interest.
  • Inducted into the board of Tata Industries, the second biggest holding company for the group a week after being appointed deputy chairman of Tata Sons, making him the 11th board member.
  • On his selection to head the group, said, “the appointment of Mr Cyrus P Mistry as deputy chairman of is a good and far-sighted choice. I have been impressed with the quality and calibre of his participation, his astute observations and his humility.”

What makes him cool

  • Will be the second youngest leader in the group when he begins serving in his new role.
  • Spends a lot of free time reading books.
  • A keen golfer and dotes on cars, especially SUVs.
  • Shares many traits with - is soft-spoken, candid and down to earth.
  • Dislikes socializing and prefers to spend time with family.
  • His father was the financier of the extravagant film Mughal-e-Azam.

First Published: Fri, December 21 2012. 13:01 IST