Dilip Shanghvi, born on October 1, 1955, is a name that resonates prominently in India's business landscape. He is not only one of the wealthiest individuals in the country but also a visionary entrepreneur who transformed the pharmaceutical industry.
Shanghvi's journey from a small town in Gujarat to becoming the founder of Sun Pharmaceuticals is a testament to his tenacity and business acumen.
Dilip Shanghvi comes from a Gujarati Jain family with roots in Kolkata. His birthplace was the quaint town of Amreli in Gujarat, where he was born to Shantilal Shanghvi and Kumud Shanghvi.
Shanghvi's educational journey began with a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Calcutta. His formative years were spent in Burrabazar, Kolkata, where he attended J.J. Ajmera High School and later Bhawanipur Education Society College for his schooling and graduation, respectively.
Shanghvi's career began by assisting his father's wholesale medicine business in Kolkata. This venture dealt primarily with generic drugs. However, it was here that Dilip Shanghvi conceived the idea of manufacturing his own pharmaceutical products instead of relying on the products of others.
In 1982, at the age of 27, Shanghvi took a bold step and established his first manufacturing unit with an initial capital of INR 10,000. He named this venture Sun Pharmaceutical Industries.
Situated in Vapi, Gujarat, not far from Mumbai, the unit initially produced just one psychiatry drug. However, under Shanghvi's guidance, the business quickly gained traction.
By 1997, Sun Pharma had grown significantly, even acquiring Caraco Pharma, an American company. In 2007, Sun Pharma further expanded its global presence by acquiring Israel's Taro Pharma.
Shanghvi's leadership and business acumen catapulted Sun Pharma to unprecedented heights. In 2012, he stepped down as Chairman and CEO, handing over the reins to Israel Makov, the former CEO of Teva Pharmaceuticals. Shanghvi assumed the position of Managing Director.
One of the most significant milestones in Sun Pharma's journey was the acquisition of Ranbaxy in 2015, a deal valued at $3.2 billion in Sun stock, along with taking on $800 million of Ranbaxy's debt.
This acquisition made Sun Pharma not only the largest drug company in India but also the fifth largest globally. It also made Daiichi Sankyo the second-largest shareholder in Sun Pharma.
In May 2021, Shanghvi stepped down from the position of Managing Director of Sun Pharma Advanced Research Company (SPARC) but continued to serve as a non-executive director and chairman.
Dilip Shanghvi's contributions extend beyond the corporate world. In 2018, the Indian government appointed him to the Reserve Bank of India's 21-member central board committee.
He also serves as the Chairman of the Board of Governors at IIT Bombay. In 2017, Shanghvi was entrusted with the role of a trustee in the prestigious Rhodes scholarship program at Oxford University.
Dilip Shanghvi is married to Vibha Shanghvi, who is actively involved with various companies, including Sun Petrochemicals Private Limited and Gujarat Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Private Limited.
The couple has two children, Aalok and Vidhi, both of whom are associated with Sun Pharmaceuticals.
Aalok Dilip Shanghvi is currently the Director, EVP and head of Business Development at Sun Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd.
Vidhi Shanghvi is also actively engaged in three companies: Sun Petrochemicals Private Limited, Vivaldis Health And Foods Private Limited, and Iti Finvest Limited.
In 2019, journalist Soma Das authored "The Reluctant Billionaire," the first and only biography of Dilip Shanghvi.
Published by Penguin Random House, the book received recognition and was nominated for the Tata Literature Award in the Best Business Book category in November 2019.
Dilip Shanghvi's journey from a modest background to a billionaire industrialist is a remarkable story of vision, determination, and the power of entrepreneurship. His legacy continues to inspire generations of aspiring entrepreneurs and innovators in India and beyond.