Dilip Shanghvi, a Local Drug Distributor who Became one of the Asia’s Richest Self-Made Billionaires


Dilip Shanghvi is the Founder, ex-CEO and Managing Director of Sun Pharmaceuticals, which is the world’s 4th largest specialty generic pharmaceutical company.

Every entrepreneur has the basic lineage of being an outcast. They do not take orders. Sanghvi was driven by the same force.

Shangvi was born in the small town of Amrelli, Gujrat. His story dates back to 1982 when after graduation, he joined his father to help him in his wholesale drug selling business. The business used to make 500 INR per month on an average.

Not a year passed when Sanghvi felt tired of working for one company as a distributor and decided to open one of his own. In 1983, he founded Sun Pharmaceuticals with an initial shared capital of 10,000 INR, his partner being Pardeep Ghosh.

The company initially operated within the state and faced losses for four consecutive years. In 1985, it suffered an annual loss of 7,000 INR (quite of a significant number those days), which led to the formal discussion of whether to continue the firm further or rather sell it. Shangvi stood firm on continuing the operations.

Finally, in 1987, it turned into a  profitable venture and went public. When the company began functioning on a national scale, it ranked 108th on the list. (Which is kind of awesome).

And then, there was no turning back. In 1997, Sun Pharmaceuticals acquired Caraco Pharma, a loss-making American Company and expanded its wings in the USA. Then, it also acquired Israel’s Taco pharma in 2007.

It became world’s fourth-largest pharmaceutical firm in 2011.

In 2012, after a successful run of twenty-nine years, Shangvi voluntarily resigned from his position as a CEO and became the managing director.

In 2016, The Government of India felicitated him with the highest civilian honour of Padma Shree, and Times ranked him #08 on their 2017 list of ‘India’s most powerful people’.

Shangvi’s story proves that if led by the foundations of determination, will-power, and honesty, even a humble start can sum up into something such successful!

As of March 2017, Shangvi is one of richest Indians with a net worth of 13.7 billion US$.