Shiv Nadar

Last Updated on August 24, 2020

Shiv Nadar  is an Indian billionaire industrialist and philanthropist.He is the founder and chairman of HCL Technologies Limited and the Shiv Nadar Foundation. Nadar founded HCL in the mid-1970s and transformed the IT hardware company into an IT enterprise over the next three decades by constantly reinventing his company’s focus. In 2008, Nadar was awarded Padma Bhushan for his efforts in the IT industry. Nadar, nicknamed by friends as Magus (Old Persian for “wizard”), since the mid-1990s has focused his efforts on developing the educational system of India through the Shiv Nadar Foundation. Ramanichandran, a prolific Tamil romance novelist is his cousin.

Questions raised on Shiv Nadar's reappointment as HCL Technologies CMD
Born14 July 1945 (age 75)
Moolaipozhi Village, Tuticorin district, Tamil Nadu, India
Alma materPSG College of Technology
OccupationFounder of HCL Technologies
Founder of SSN College of Engineering
Net worthUS$14.4 billion (May 2020)
Spouse(s)Kiran Nadar
ChildrenRoshni Nadar
AwardsPadma Bhushan (2008)

Early life and education

Nadar was born in 1945 in Moolaipozhi Village, about 10 kilometres (6.2 mi) from Tiruchendur in Thoothukudi district (present), Tamil Nadu, India.[citation needed] His parents were Sivasubramaniya Nadar and Vamasundari Devi.  His mother, Vamasundari Devi, is the sister of S. P. Adithanar, founder of Dina Thanthi newspaper.

Nadar studied at Town Higher Secondary School, Kumbakonam. Also, studied in Elango Corporation Higher Secondary School, Madurai. He was admitted into the first form (Sixth Standard) in June 1955 and continued his education in Town High School until June 1957. Later, he joined St. Joseph Boys Higher Secondary School, Trichy, and completed high school education here. Nadar received a pre-university degree in the American College, Madurai[circular reference] and a degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore.


Nadar began his career at Walchand group’s College of Engineering, Pune (COEP) in 1967. he soon gave it up to begin his own venture, in partnerships with several friends and colleagues. These partners were Ajai Chowdhry (Ex-Chairman, HCL), Arjun Malhotra (CEO and Chairman, Headstrong), Subhash Arora, Yogesh Vaidya, S. Raman, Mahendra Pratap and DS Puri.

The initial enterprise which Nadar and his partners began was Microcomp, a company which focused on selling teledigital calculators in the Indian market. HCL was founded in 1976, with an investment of Rs. 187,000.

In 1980, HCL ventured into the international market with the opening of Far East Computers in Singapore to sell IT hardware. The venture reported Rs 1 million revenue in the first year and continued to address the Singapore operations. Nadar remained the largest shareholder without retaining any management control.

Focus on education and healthcare

Shri Shiv Nadar and Ms Roshni Nadar presenting a cheque of Rs. 4 crore to the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, towards the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund in New Delhi on January 17, 2005

Shri Shiv Nadar and Ms Roshni Nadar presenting a cheque of Rs. 4 crore to the Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, towards the Prime Minister’s National Relief Fund in New Delhi on January 17, 2005

In 1996, Nadar founded SSN College of Engineering in Chennai, Tamil Nadu in the name of his father, Sivasubramaniya Nadar. Nadar took an active role in the college activities, including the gifting of Rs. 1 million worth of HCL shares to the college. In 2006, Nadar announced that the college will promote research apart from ensuring that students benefit from foreign university tie-ups.  Nadar joined the executive board of Indian School of Business in 2005. In March 2008, Nadar’s SSN Trust announced the setting up of two Vidyagyan schools in UP for rural students, where free scholarship will be provided for 200 students from 50 districts of Uttar Pradesh. He visited Town Higher Secondary School in February 2011 and donated computers and other equipment worth Rs. 80 lakhs. He served as chairman of the board of governors, Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur (IIT Kharagpur or IIT-KGP), a technical institute until 2014.

Personal life

Roshni Nadar takes over from father at HCL - Times of India

His only daughter Roshni Nadar is now chairman of HCL.

Awards and accolades

In 2008, the government of India awarded Nadar with a Padma Bhushan, the third highest civilian award, for his contribution to the IT industry.

In 2007, Madras University awarded him an honorary doctorate degree. Nadar was also recognised as E&Y Entrepreneur of the Year 2007 (Services).

In 1995 he became the Dataquest IT Man of the year the In 2005 he was bestowed with CNBC Business Excellence Award. In 2006 he received an honorary fellowship from the All India Management Association. In 2011 he was counted amongst Forbes‘ 48 Heroes of Philanthropy in Asia Pacific. In 2010 he received the Dataquest Lifetime Achievement Award.

In April 2017, India Today magazine ranked Nadar #16th in India’s 50 most powerful people of 2017 list. Nadar has committed more than $1 billion to philanthropy