Keshub Mahindra, the esteemed Chairman Emeritus of the Mahindra Group, passed away today at the age of 99. An industrial icon, he had an illustrious career spanning several decades, leaving an indelible mark on the business world.
In a heartfelt tribute, Pawan Goenka, former Managing Director of Mahindra & Mahindra (M&M), said, “The industrial world has lost one of the tallest personalities today. Shri Keshub Mahindra had no match; the nicest person I had the privilege of knowing. I always looked forward to meetings with him and was inspired by how he connected business, economics, and social matters. Om Shanti.”
A graduate from Wharton University, Keshub Mahindra steered the Mahindra empire as Chairman for a remarkable 48 years, from 1963 to 2012. Under his visionary leadership, the company expanded its footprint beyond automobile manufacturing to encompass diverse business segments such as IT, real estate, financial services, and hospitality.
Keshub Mahindra was a trailblazer in the Indian auto industry, playing pivotal roles in forging strategic alliances with global giants like the Willys Corporation, Mitsubishi, International Harvester, United Technologies, British Telecom, and many others. His contributions helped position India as a recognized player in the global automobile sector and establish the country as a manufacturing hub.
Apart from his role at Mahindra, Keshub Mahindra also served on numerous Boards and Councils in both private and public domains. He was the founder Chairman of HUDCO and held positions in esteemed organizations like SAIL, Tata Steel, Tata Chemicals, Indian Hotels, IFC, ICICI, and HDFC. He also held the prestigious positions of President of the Employers’ Federation of India and the Bombay Chamber of Commerce and Industry. He was a member of the Sachar Commission on Company Law and Reforms, a member of the Prime Minister’s Council on Trade and Industry, and Chairman of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad.
Vinod Aggarwal, President of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM), expressed his condolences, stating, “The Indian Automobile Industry has lost one of its pioneers. His leadership in the early years of the journey of the Indian Auto Industry had led to India being recognized as an important player globally and also helped in India becoming a manufacturing hub for the Automobile sector.”
Keshub Mahindra’s contributions and vision continue to inspire generations of business leaders. In 2012, he passed on the baton to his nephew, Anand Mahindra, who took over as Chairman of Mahindra & Mahindra. Keshub Mahindra’s legacy as a visionary leader, entrepreneur, and philanthropist will be remembered for years to come.
As the business world mourns the loss of this illustrious personality, Pawan Goenka aptly summarized, “The industrial world has lost one of the tallest personalities today. Shri Keshub Mahindra had no match; the nicest person I had the privilege of knowing. I always looked forward to meetings with him and was inspired by how he connected business, economics, and social matters. Om Shanti.”