There is more to DMart Founder Damani than his newly acquired Rs 1,000 crore home in Mumbai

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Updated: April 03, 2021 3:47 PM

Kishore Biyani, the trail blazer in Indian retail who has experimented with a range of formats and exited, sees Damani as “a simple, humble person who works with limited number of variables and is highly focussed.”

Radhakishan Damani, DmartIn fact, DMart’s website also describes Damani as “an astute investor in the Indian equity market.” (File Photo)

Those who know Radhakishan Damani, the 66-year-old founder of Indian retail giant DMart, describe him as a focussed wealth creator and a typical under-the-radar operator, much like his good old friend Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, India’s ace stock market investor. In fact, DMart’s website also describes Damani as “an astute investor in the Indian equity market.” Therefore, when the news was out that Damani had bought a new 5752,22 sq metre home in the tony Malabar Hill of Mumbai for a whopping Rs 1,001 crore, not many were surprised. A close friend of Damani in fact finds both Jhunjhunwala and Damani as very good friends but poles apart as personalities as says: “Rakesh Jhunjhunwala is very impulsive and more vocal whereas Radhakishan is not so impulsive and a keen listener,” On his new asset acquisition in Mumbai, his friends say, Damani is typically not the kind to show off and the investment was perhaps triggered by the fact that he has to invest his wealth somewhere and that is what could have also led to his other such decisions including the one to buy a hotel in Alibagh. Damani’s DMart has come a long way and post the Reliance-Future deal becomes the next biggest player in the organised Indian retail space. His company Avenue Supermarts, a listed company, which runs DMart has for the FY 19-20 posted a net profit of Rs 1,349.89 crore on revenues of Rs 24,675.01 crore.

Kishore Biyani, the trail blazer in Indian retail who has experimented with a range of formats and exited, sees Damani as “a simple, humble person who works with limited number of variables and is highly focussed.”

ALSO READ: Radhakishan Damani’s Rs 1,000 crore home: DMart founder buys new property at Mumbai’s Malabar Hill

Those who track the retail sector also find Damani’s approach to wealth creation as quite focussed. Arvind Singhal, a retail sector expert and the chairman and managing director of Technopak, a leading management consulting firm, says unlike what most refer to Damani as an ace investor in the stock market, what is apparent about Damani, he says, is that “he comes across as a terribly shrewd businessman who has never been distracted in terms of attending different formats or geographies. He has stayed focussed on his retail delivery format and model, geographical spread (with footprint still across 11 states and one union territory of Daman), cost management and value for customers. So, it is no surprise therefore that he has ended up creating a lot of wealth for himself and his other shareholders.” Incidentally, he has “Damani has never been lobbying against foreign investment in Indian retail, which perhaps is quite unique despite his scale and size of operations.”

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