New Delhi: Kalanithi Maran, owner of $2.8 billion (appx Rs 15,000 crores) Sun Group which today won the Hyderabad franchise of the Indian Premier League, has come a long way from being a student leader in prestigious Loyola College to turning into South India’s biggest media baron.
The 48-year-old Kalanithi Maran, who is the son of former Union Minister for Commerce Murasoli Maran and elder brother of former union textiles minister Dayanidhi Maran was the chairman of Loyola college’s student wing which had taken up the cause of Tamil people based in Sri Lanka in mid 80′s. As per Forbes.com, Kalanithi is currently 24th in the list of the richest Indians — a list that includes big names like Ambani brothers Mukesh and Anil, steel baron Lakshmi Mittal, Azeem Premji, Adi Godrej, Kumar Mangalam Birla, Rahul Bajaj to name a few.
An MBA from the University of Scranton (Pennsylvania), the media moghul from South has diverse business interest from owning TV channels to having a sizeable stake in SpiceJet airlines as well venturing into DTH service and couple of Tamil newspapers (Dinakaran & Tamil Murasu).
He is also the owner of multilingual FM channel (93.5 Red FM) as well Tamil FM channel (Suryan FM). His company is also into Tamil movie production as Tollywood is one of the biggest film industry in the world. Kalanithi is learnt to have increased his stakes in SpiceJet to about 48 percent.
While he started the Sun TV back in April 14, 1993 with a modest bank loan of USD 86,000, exactly 10 years and 10 days after the launch on April 24, 2006 — the company was listed in Bomaby Stock Exchange upon raising $133 million.