Cyrus Mistry has been removed by the Tata Group as the Chairman in what has come as a bolt out of the blue for the corporate world. He has been replaced by Ratan Tata, his immediate predecessor. According to reports, the equation between both had fallen to an all-time low over the management style adopted by Mistry. Ratan Tata had a very expansionist mindset while Mistry is more keen on selling off businesses that are not performing. Tata will now take over for a 4-month period till a newly appointed panel comes up with a successor.
However, Mistry is reportedly vowing to approach the Bombay High Court to contest his removal and the largest shareholder in Tata Sons has already termed the removal as ‘illegal’. Exactly how the future course of action pans out in the Tata Group is unclear. Be that as it may, we take a look at some of his achievements as the chairman in his 4-year tenure:
1. Financial impairments taken in Tata Steel, Tata Chemicals and Indian Hotels as Mistry chased profits and not assets
2. Urea business of Tata Chemicals sold to Norway-based Yara International’s Indian unit for Rs 2,670 crore
3. Taj Boston and Taj Blue Sydney sold, pursuit of Oriental Express abandoned
4. Pulled out application for licence to set up commercial bank
5. Negotiated sale of Tata Steel Europe to Greybull Capital
6. Market cap of top 10 listed firms up at Rs 8.21 lakh cr from Rs 4.66 lakh cr
7. Operating cash flows at the Tata group have soared over 30 percent CAGR in the last 3 years.
8. Tata group’s gross debt jumped by 2 per cent, but net debt decreased by 3.3 per cent; however, cash and equivalent assets grew some 10 per cent.
9. With some 70 per cent of Tata group revenue coming from its international operations, Mistry ensured a lion’s share of capital expenditure went in that direction too and thereby virtually guaranteed no problems beset the group’s functioning there.
10. Tata Motors has been able to turn itself around somewhat and is on the brink of launch one of the best vehicles it has ever made in the form of Tata Hexa, which is expected to really give Toyota Innova and Mahindra And Mahindra XUV 500 a run for its money. Mistry aimed to launch at least 2 vehicles per year.
11. Tata group has expanded into the defence manufacturing business.