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ARDESHIR GODREJ

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 Indian businessman and co-founder of the Godrej Brothers Company

NAME – Ardeshir Burjorji Sorabji Godrej

PROFESSION– Businessman

BORN – 26/ 03 /1868

PLACE OF BIRTH – Bombay, British India

FATHER’S NAME – Burjorji Godrej

MOTHER’S NAME – Dosibai Godrej

SPOUSE – Bachubai Godrej

SIBLINGS – 5

CHILDREN – 0

EDUCATION

He completed his schooling from the J J Fort Boys’ High School, Bombay

He then pursued law

COMPANIES– Godrej Group of Companies

NET WORTH– N/A

AWARDS – N/A

BACKGROUND

Ardeshir Burjorji Sorabji Godrej was an Indian businessman. He along with his brother Pirojsha Burjorji founded the Godrej Brothers Company, now known as the Godrej Group.

Born in 1868, Ardershir was the first of six children born to Burjorji and Dosibai Gootherajee. He was born to a wealthy Parsi-Zoroastrian Gootherajee family residing in Bombay (now Mumbai), and his father was in real estate. In January 1871, his family changed their name to Godrej.

In 1890, Ardeshir married Bachu (Bachubai), who had just turned eighteen, unfortunately in 1891 she died. Ardershir never remarried.

In 1894, Ardeshir was hired by a law firm to argue a case, soon after the case he realized that he was not made for the profession. For some time he worked at a pharmacy as an assistant to a chemist. In 1895, Ardeshir visited Merwanji Muncherji Cama, his father’s friend and asked him for a loan to manufacture surgical equipment. He got Rs 3,000 from Cama and began manufacturing “scalpels, scissors and the other instruments of a surgeon’s trade.

Ardershir learned about the rise of burglary in the country and the need of better locks in India. On research he found that locks made in India were all made by hand, and is not so efficient. That is when he resolved to make a lock that would be “unpickable”. Soon he began manufacturing high security locks under the Anchor brand with the attached a guarantee of “unpickability” on them. Soon after, Ardeshir developed a lock called “Detector Lock”, which, could tell if an incorrect key is used to unlock it.In 1901, Ardeshir began experimenting with safes.

He resolved to build a safe which would not only be burglarproof but also fireproof. He was successful in this endeavor as well. In 1902, the first safe entered the market

In 1928, Ardeshir transferred the ownership of the company to his brother Pirojsh to try his hand at farming. This didn’t work out very well for him. Then his attention was drawn to the fact that all soaps in the world were made of tallow and other animal fats, so he found a method to make soaps from vegetable oils, something that many considered impossible.

He died in 1936.

CAREER TIMELINE

1894- Ardeshir took to argue his first case.

1894-   He returned to Bombay and took employment at a pharmacy as an assistant to a chemist.

1895- Ardeshir described his plan to manufacture surgical equipment to Merwanji Muncherji Cama, his father’s friend, and asked for a loan.

1985_ Ardeshir began manufacturing instruments of a surgeon’s trade.

1897- Ardeshir set to revolutionise the Indian lock-manufacturing industry and began manufacturing high security locks under the Anchor brand

A few years later, He made what we now know as a “Gordian Lock”.

1901- Ardeshir entered the arena of safes. He resolved to build a fireproof safe

1902- The first safes entered the market.

1908- Ardeshir got a British patent for the world’s first springless lock.

1910- Ardeshir went to England, France and Germany to study lock-making.

1928- Ardeshir transferred his company to his brother Pirojsha to try his hand at farming.

Ardeshi found a method to make soap from vegetable oils

1936- Ardeshir Godrej died.

CONTROVERSIES/CASES

On completion of manufacturing surgical instruments, he was congratulated for his innovation by the proprietor of the company, but he refused to stamp it as “Made in India”. Despite his requests he was denied for India’s products were considered substandard back then and it would be bad for marketing according to the proprietor. Ardershir did not budge and neither did the proprietor and the venture died.

Back in 1894, When Ardeshir took his first case, it did not go well s Ardershir refused to twist the facts and the clients dropped him as their lawyer. This made him realize that this profession was not for him.

In an interview published by the Indian National Herald, Ardershir expressed criticism towards the ongoing Swadeshi Movement and resisted the use of indigenous products just because they were indigenous. He felt there was no reason to favor substandard products as in his opinion India was very well capable to manufacturing quality products.

He also was not a supporter of Gandhi’s non-violence movement. He opined that if India wanted to become independent; then it should actively make itself independent.

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