Tata Sons Private Limited

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Tata Sons Private Limited


the largest monopoly in India, established in the late 19th century. The Tata group of industries grew out of the trading firm of Jamsetjee Tata, a Bombay merchant, who had made his fortune exporting opium to China. The firm built its first industrial enterprise, a textile factory in Nagpur, in 1877 and the country’s first metallurgical works in 1907. By the beginning of World War II, the group included the Central Bank of India; various insurance and transport firms; textile, perfume, and cement companies; and hydroelectric power plants.

During the postwar period, Tata, aided by its financial links with foreign companies—chiefly British until the 1960’s, thereafter U.S. and West German—expanded into new industries, thereby increasing its power. After India gained its independence in 1947 and the government nationalized the country’s sea and air transport companies, insurance firms, and commercial banks, Tata concentrated its activities primarily in industry.

By the 1970’s, the Tata group had grown into a giant complex. It has extensive assets in ferrous metallurgy (accounting for more than 30 percent of its assets), machine building and automobile manufacturing (more than 15 percent), power engineering (10 percent), and the chemical industry (more than 5 percent). It is also one of the largest private export firms. The Tata family owns 83 percent of the group’s parent company. In the early 1970’s the total assets of the various companies in the group amounted to 8.5 billion rupees, and the number of employees exceeded 140,000.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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