Dr. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw has entered the elite ranks of the Indian business world as India's richest woman. Born on 23 March, 1953, she is the Chairman & Managing Director of Biocon Ltd. She did her schooling from Bangalore and graduated in Zoology from Bangalore University in 1973, after which she moved on to Ballarat University in Melbourne, Australia. She became India's first woman Brew Master and started off as a trainee brewer in Carlton & United Beverages in 1974, following which she worked in various positions in Kolkata and Vadodara.
She collaborated with Biocon Biochemicals Limited, Ireland, to found Biocon India in 1978. Initially, she faced many problems, but she was not the one to give up. Her firm has grown to be the biggest biopharmaceutical firm in India today. Though her business interests keep her occupied, she has found time to write a book titled 'Ale and Arty'. She tied the knot with John Shaw, in 1998, who was working as the managing director of Madura Coats. After their marriage, John Shaw quit Madura Coat and joined Biocon.
A very active social activist, she has been involved in various projects like the Bangalore Agenda Task Force (BATF). She was awarded the MV Memorial Award, given in honour of the great engineer and visionary Sir M Vishwesharaiah. Apart from this, she was awarded the Wharton Infosys Business Transformation Award in 2006, the Padma Bhushan in 2005, the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Indian Chamber of Commerce in 2005, the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award in Healthcare & Life Sciences Category in 2002 besides the Padma Shri in 1989.
Dr. Kiran Majumdar-Shaw has held several honorary and advisory positions. Among them, she was the Chairperson and Mission Leader of the Confederation of Indian Industry's National Task Force on Biotechnology, a member of the Prime Minister's Council on Trade & Industry in India, Member, Board of Science Foundation, Ireland , Member, Board of Governors, IIM Bangalore and many others. In doing so, she has set an example for other Indian women to follow.
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