Indian billionaire Gautam Adani has added Rs75 crore to his wealth every hour this year despite the Covid-19 pandemic.
Earlier this week, Adani became Asia's second-richest person putting behind China's bottled water king Zhong Shanshan, reports the Times Now News.
According to Bloomberg Billionaire's Index, Adani's total fortune stands at $69 billion; in the 142 days of 2021, he has added $35.2 billion or Rs2.56 lakh crore to his wealth - meaning he has added a little over Rs75 crore to his wealth every hour this year.
In value terms, this wealth addition was second only to French luxury Tycoon Bernard Arnaut, who added $47.9 billion to his personal wealth this year, according to the Bloomberg index.
Adani's wealth addition this year was more than the combined wealth addition of $24.5 billion by 19 other Indian billionaires together.
Shares of Adani's group companies such as Adani Green, Adani Enterprises, Adani Gas and Adani Transmission have seen massive rally over the one-year period despite the pandemic. Adani Total Gas has surged 1145% in the last one year, while Adani Enterprises and Adani Transmission shares have advanced 827% and 617%, respectively. Adani Green Energy and Adani Power have gained 433% and 189%, respectively, during this period, while Adani Power has advanced 142%.
Adani, who started his career as a diamond trader in the early 1980s, soon moved back to his home state of Gujarat to help run his brother's plastics business before setting up Adani Enterprises, his flagship company in 1988. Gradually he expanded his business into ports, airports, energy, resources, logistics, agribusiness, real estate, financial services, gas distribution, defense sectors.
In 1995, he got the contract to manage Mundra Port, located on the coast of the Arabian Sea. Now his company is India's largest private-sector port and airport operator.
The group has also became India's biggest non-state owned power producer and a leader in coal mining, and has expanded abroad. In Australia, the tycoon is still dealing with negative publicity for his Carmichael thermal-coal project, for which he won approval last year after a decade-long struggle with regulators and environmentalists.
Unlike other entrepreneurs, Adani moved into sectors which the government was pushing to develop and where competition was relatively lesser. In a bid to increase its dominance in India's infrastructure sector, Adani group has been in a dealmaking spree over the last two years. In March, Adani Ports and Special Economic Zone Ltd acquired a 58.1% stake in Gangavaram Port Ltd from DVS Raju and family for Rs3,604 crore, winning majority control of the private port at Visakhapatnam in Andhra Pradesh. It had earlier acquired a 31.5% stake in the port from Warburg Pincus.
In September, the group took over control of the Mumbai international airport from the GVK group, besides getting a controlling stake in the upcoming Navi Mumbai International Airport. It has also won 50-year operating rights for the recently privatized airports at Ahmedabad, Lucknow, Mangaluru, Jaipur, Thiruvananthapuram, and Guwahati.
With $69 billion now he has narrowed his wealth gap with Asia's richest person Mukesh Ambani, who has a total fortune of $77 billion as of now according to the Bloomberg Billionaire's Index. The pace at which Adani is adding to his wealth he may soon dethrone Ambani to become Asia's richest person.