Radhakishan Damani

It's rare for people to make their fortune by not only investing but also starting their own ventures. Radhakishan Damani is one of those people. He's a veteran investor, founder of DMart, which is a hypermarket chain corporation, and was also the mentor of another investing mogul, Rakesh Jhujhunwala. At the age of 67, he has a net worth of about $29.4 billion, as of October 2021.

As an investor and trader in his early 20s, Damani would closely observe the actions of the dreaded operator, Manu Manek, the then ruler of Dalal Street and nicknamed ‘cobra’ by brokers that did not like him. His observation of the feared operator allowed Radhakishan Damani to emulate his techniques and overpower the next big operator on Dalal Street, Harshad Mehta. 

As the years went by, Radhakishan Damani managed to establish himself as an ace investor that had studied the markets carefully ever since his early days. An article in the economics times talks about Damani’s incredible growth as an investor. You can read about it here.

The next phase of Radhakishan Damani’s already impeccable career came in 2002 in the form of retail chain D-Mart. D-Mart started out as a humble and unthreatening single store in 2002 but quickly turned into a behemoth with close to 200 stores, as of 2019. The parent company - Avenue Supermarts applied for an Initial Public Offering and in 2017, had a record-breaking opening, shattering the previous market opening records and establishing itself as one of India’s most valuable companies.

Radhakishan Damani’s investing prowess has resulted in him becoming one of India's richest individuals. He invests via his promoter company Blue Star Investments Limited and a couple of other trust funds for his children. He owns a stake in several companies, including his property portfolio investment in the sprawling Radisson Blu Hotel in Alibaug.

While he does seem to be one of the most successful investors in India and the owner of a retail giant, Radhakishan Damani is a rare sight when it comes to media and seldom makes public appearances. He also keeps his interaction with the press at a minimum.

Damani is one of the few billionaires in the world that saw his net worth grow during the COVID-19 pandemic, thanks to DMart and the public hoarding essential goods. His diverse portfolio range from a stake in gambling and casino company Delta Corp to tobacco company VST industries to cement company India Cement.

Apart from being one of the foremost players in the Indian stock market and an incredibly enterprising individual, Damani is also a generous philanthropist and has been in the news for donating ₹100 crores to the PM Relief Fund and another ₹55 crores to various state government funds.

This ace investor and entrepreneur often dresses in neat whites, provides a few important lessons to retail investors and to be entrepreneurs alike, the important ones being patience and observation. His career is the prime example of the fact that you’re never too young to get into capital markets and you’re never too old to start your own business.

The coming years only seem to be bringing more prosperity for Radhikshan Damani and his companies. The only thing left to see for us is if he still has another ace up his sleeve that would, yet again, leave a mark on the Indian and global markets at large.

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