New Delhi: Ashwin Suryakant Dani, co-founder of Asian Paints Ltd., passed away on September 28 at the age of 79. Dani, an Indian billionaire businessman with interests in 16 countries, was the non-executive chairman of India’s largest paint firm. According to reports, he was the second-generation scion of the family that co-founded the business.
Dani began his career at Asian Paints in 1968 as a senior executive before moving up the corporate ladder to become the firm’s CEO. With a combined sales of Rs 21,700 crore, Dani’s contribution was crucial to the company’s development, becoming the largest paint manufacturer in the nation.
According to the most recent Forbes report, Ashwin Dani and his family were number 293 internationally for having a net worth of 7.7 billion USD (or around Rs 64,000 crore).
He was born in Mumbai On September 26, 1944, and earned a Bachelor of Science in Chemistry from Mumbai University in 1966. After that, he travelled to the US to enrol in the University of Akron’s Master of Chemical Engineering programme. In Detroit, he began his work as a scientist. Later, as a senior executive, he joined the Asian Paints company, owned by his family.
Dani served in a variety of positions for the company throughout the years, including managing director, director (research and development), director (works), full-time director, and vice-chairman. Dani was renowned for employing R&D to introduce innovative ideas to the industry and the painting sector.
Dani served as the company’s and the board of directors’ chairman from 2018 and 2021. Suryakant, his father, was one of Asian Paints’ co-founders.
Dani has been a powerful force in guiding the company towards technological excellence and is in charge of the creation and debut in India of several innovative products. In the Indian industry, he was a pioneer in the development of computerised colour matching. In the fields of paints, polymers, printing inks, and textiles, this idea is now frequently applied.
He played a key role in creating the 50:50 Joint Venture for industrial coatings between Asian Paints Limited and PPG Industries Inc., USA. PPG Asian Paints Private Limited, now in its 26th year of business, was the first joint venture firm with PPG Industries Inc., and he was the founding director on the board.
He also had a significant impact on the switch from metal to plastic containers for the attractive packaging of water-thinnable paints. Henkel Adhesive Technologies India, which is now known as Loctite India, was founded and promoted by him.
Malav Dani, their son, is a member of the Asian Paints board of directors. In addition to his business activities, Ashwin was an avid yoga practitioner and an art collector. Forbes estimates his family’s net wealth to be $7.7 billion.