India’s equity market scaled new peaks in 2017, making it Asia's second-best performer. That added to the fortunes of nation’s richest.
Billionaire Mukesh Ambani, India’s richest man with a net worth of nearly $40.3 billion, gained the most during the year. He added $17.6 billion to his net worth, according to the Bloomberg Billionaire Index data compiled on Dec. 20. The key trigger was his telecom arm Reliance Jio Infocomm Ltd. The nation’s youngest wireless carrier with 13.9 crore subscribers has triggered a tariff war and driven consolidation in the world’s second-largest telecom market.
Gautam Adani, whose infrastructure group is the country’s largest coal trader, gained $5.56 billion this year, riding on stock market gains. He is followed by Lakshmi Mittal, chairman of the world's largest steelmaker ArcelorMittal, which gained amid an uptick in global steel demand. Alloy prices hit record highs since the 2008 global crisis after China announced winter production cuts.
Radhakrishnan Damani of Avenue Supermarts Ltd. features next, helped by the blockbuster market debut of the parent of D-Mart supermarket chain that turned him into a billionaire.
Azim Premji, 56 percent owner of software services provider Wipro Ltd., completes the top five gainers.