Azim Premji is not only one of the richest people in the country but also one of the biggest donors. The IT leading company Wipro’s Chairman has given away more money in the welfare up till now, than the wealth that he currently holds with himself.
Indian IT industry is one of the top IT industries in the world. However, in spite of a large number of players in the field, there are only a few leading organizations that hold a monopoly in the major part of the market. Wipro Limited is one such player. Wipro is one of the biggest IT companies in India and a significant tech-supplier to foreign countries as well. Hence, it is obvious that the heads of companies are celebrities in the country.
The well-known technology leader Azim Premji, Chairman of Wipro Limited is one of the richest people in India. The third most rich one after Reliance Industries Chairman, Mukesh Ambani & the Hinduja Family. His net worth is around $ 16.5 billion. However, in a recent interview, he said that it does not ‘thrill him’ to be that rich.
If you look at his charity and donations, then they sum up to $21 billion. Even though Wipro’s Azim Premji was not on the top of the ‘IIFL Wealth Hurun-India’s Rich list’ for the year 2019, he is still the richest tech billionaire in the country. Because he has not only earned the most but also has donated the most. That makes him rich at wealth and heart as well.
Apart from being the runner-up richest person to Mukesh Ambani and the Hinduja family, he is also the only tech billionaire in the top ten rich people’s list. However, this is not what makes him the odd one out.
As per a report by Hurun Report India and IIFL Wealth Management, Azim Premji is holding a net worth of ₹117,100 crores ($16.5 billion) for the year 2019. However, his total contribution to philanthropy currently stands at ₹148,925 crores ($21 billion). The amount stands at 30% higher than his net-worth holding.
Azim Premji is not only a rich person but also an influential personality in the country. The technological tycoon has appeared amongst ‘100 Most Influential People’ list by TIME Magazine for two times. Once in the year 2004 & again in 2011.
Speaking of his big heart for the charity, in 2013, Premji agreed to give away half of his wealth for charity purposes. He signed ‘The Giving Pledge’ for donating half of his total assets for the welfare of society.
‘The Giving Pledge’ initiative was led by the two richest people of the world, Warren Buffet & Bill Gates. It is a campaign to encourage people to contribute a majority of their wealth to philanthropic causes. As of May 2019, the pledge has 204 signatories, either individuals or couples, from 22 countries.
The best part is that most of the signatories to the pledge are a billionaire and their total pledge up till now have accounted for $500 billion. Azim Premji was the first Indian to have signed up for the campaign as he believed that being rich ‘did not thrill him’.
Apart from this, in early 2019, Azim Premji set aside 34% of Wipro’s shares for his charity organisation- the Azim Premji Foundation. It is a not-for-profit organisation that has been working at improving the elementary education system in government schools since 2000 majorly in rural and underprivileged areas.
This addition to the charity has added to his earlier donations, making it a total of 67% of Premji’s shares are now earmarked for the charity.
Azim Premji’s big heart tells us the true story that being rich is not the thrill, but making the society rich is the real thrill. His donations are recognized all over the world and he is a well praised and respected personality in the country. We hope that other business giants learn a lesson from him and do their part for the welfare and benefit of society.
Author: Keshav Kothari
A young CA Aspirant who is a writer and a photographer with the zeal to convey a positive perception through his work.