Often called ‘The King of Good Times’ or the ‘Liquor Baron’ the charismatic business tycoon and successful entrepreneur of India, Vijay Mallya, is the owner of various ventures including the UB conglomerate, Kingfisher Airlines and United Breweries Group. He is also a member of the parliament.
Vijay Mallya was born on 18th December 1955 in Kolkata, India. He went to St. Xavier’s College and graduated with a degree of Bachelors of Commerce. Even during his studies his deep interest in the family business resulted in an increased understanding of managing a business. Upon his father’s death, Mallya was selected as the Chairman of United Breweries. His first step was to combine other companies under the brand name of ‘UB Group’. He let go of the loss bearing businesses and devoted his complete attention on the primary business of selling alcohol. Presently his brand ‘Kingfisher beer’ owns more than 50% of the market share. His beer is offered in 52 other countries besides India and is one of the leading Indian beers. His company ‘United Spirits Ltd’, which is the flagship of UB group, sold 114 million cases making it the biggest spirit selling business of the world. Mallya’s aviation business, the ‘Kingfisher Airlines’ was established in 2003. It soon acquired the domestic airline ‘Air Deccan’. The airline is however on the verge of going bankrupt. An arrest warrant was issued against him on 12th October 2012 for paying a bounced cheque to GMR Group. Kingfisher’s license was taken away on 20th October 2012 after its failure to answer to the DGCA.
With his immense wealth Vijay Mallya enjoys the liberty of buying off items of high value. He has bought several things that are of a lot of importance in India such as the sword of Tipu Sultan and some belongings of Mahatma Gandhi. This caused quite an upheaval in India. Being a huge sports fan Mallya co-owns Spyker, the F1 racing team that is worth 88 million Euros. His company bought the IPL (Indian Premier League) team called the Royal Challengers Bangalore that includes respected players like Rahul Dravid, Jacques Kallis, Anil Kumble, Zaheer Khan, Sunil Joshi, Ross Taylor, Misbah-ul-Haq, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Dale Steyn and Kevin Pietersen.
Mallya has been recognized with several awards nationally and internationally. The Southern California University for Professional Studies awarded him the honorary degree ‘Doctorate of Philosophy’ in Business Administration. He was named ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ at the Asian Awards in 2010. He also received the nominations for ‘Global Leader for Tomorrow’ by the World Economic Forum. Mallya was presented with the ‘Legion of Honor’ that is the highest civilian award of France.
India’s Richard Branson lives by the belief of living ‘king-size’. He has a distinct and exotic style and whether it is sport, aviation, beer or anything else he is always there to give it a try and succeeds in almost everything he does. With a net worth of 1.2 billion dollars, his passion and energy is still on the high.