The House of Tatas is India’s biggest business conglomerate. In February 2000, Tata Tea (now Tata Global Beverages or TGB) acquired Tetley, inventor of the teabag and maker of the traditional English cuppa, for 271 million pounds, 54.42 times its pretax earnings. 17 years later, TGB’s pretax profits were just 29% higher, and 52.8% came from the coffee business, not tea.
Tata Motors’ share in the Indian passenger vehicles market fell from 15% in 2010 to 5.4% in 2017. Ratan Tata’s pet project – NANO – was a shameful failure. Only 7500 Nanos sold in 2017. With a $1 billion project cost, each Nano has costed Tata Motors $218,000 in cape amortisation alone. In the 21 years that Rata Tata was Chairman, group revenues grew at a compounded annual growth rate (CAGR) of just 6.83% and profits at a GAGR of less than 8%, both much less than the Indian GDP growth.
Many other Tata companies have floundered – Taj Hotels, Tata DoCoMo, Croma, Trent, to name a few. The entire group survives on just one company – TCS.
The book takes you through an analytical history of the House of Tatas, and also analyses the 49 angel investments that Ratan Tata made after retirement.