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Dhirubhai Ambani

Dhirajlal Hirachanda Ambani (28 December 1932, - 6 July 2002), (lovingly called Dhirubhai ) was an Indian rags to riches, business tycoon who founded Reliance Industries with his cousin in Mumbai.

Early life

Dhirubhai Ambani (Dhirajlal Hirachand Ambani) was born on 28 December 1932, at Chorwad, Junagadh in the now state of Gujarat, India to Hirachand Gordhanbhai Ambani and Jamnaben in a Modh family of very moderate means . He was the second son of a school teacher. Dhirubhai Ambani is said to have started his entrepreneurial career by selling "pakora" to pilgrims in Mount Girnar over the weekends. When he was 16 years old, he moved to Aden,Yemen. He worked as a dispatch clerk with A. Besse & Co. Two years later A. Besse & Co. became the distributors for Shell products and Dhirubhai was promoted to manage the company’s oil-filling station at the port of Aden. He was married to Kokilaben and had two sons, Mukesh Ambani and Anil Ambani, and two daughters, Nina Kothari and Deepti. He also worked in Aden, Yemen. for some time during his early years. A short Biography of Dhirubhai Ambani is available on Reliance Communications Ltd.

Reliance Commercial Corporation

Ten years later, Dhirubhai returned to India and started the Reliance Commercial Corporation with a capital of Rs.15,000.00. The primary business of Reliance Commercial Corporation was to import polyester yarn and export spices. The business was setup in partnership with Champaklal Damani, his second cousin, who used to be with him in Aden, Yemen. The first office of the Reliance Commercial Corporation was set up at the Narsinathan Street in Masjid Bunder. It was a 350 Sq. Ft. room with a telephone, one table and three chairs. Initially, they had two assistants to help them with their business. In 1965, Champaklal Damani and Dhirubhai Ambani ended their partnership and Dhirubhai started on his own. It is believed that both had different temperaments and a different take on how to conduct business. While Mr. Damani was a cautious trader and did not believe in building yarn inventories, Dhirubhai was a known risk taker and he considered that building inventories, anticipating a price rise, and making profits through that was good for growth. During this period, Dhirubhai and his family used to stay in one bedroom apartment at the Jaihind Estate in Bhuleshwar, Mumbai.In 1968, he moved to an upmarket apartment at Altamount Road in South Mumbai.

Reliance Textiles Sensing a good opportunity in the textile business, Dhirubhai started his first textile mill at Naroda, in Ahmedabad in the year 1966. Textiles were manufactured using polyester fibre yarn.Dhirubhai started the brand "Vimal", which was named after his elder brother Ramaniklal Ambani's son, Vimal Ambani. Extensive marketing of the brand "Vimal" in the interiors of India made it a household name. Franchise retail outlets were started and they used to sell "only Vimal" brand of textiles. In the year 1975, a Technical team from the World Bank visited the Reliance Textiles' Manufacturing unit. This unit has the rare distinction of being certified as "excellent even by developed country standards" during that period.
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