MUMBAI: Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Trusts, Friday called all employees of the Tata group “inheritors and custodians of the Trusts” and of its “belief in making a sustainable change” in society.
The charitable trust owns 66% of Tata Sons, the holding entity of all companies controlled by the salt-to-software conglomerate.
“You bring your zeal, your vigor, your integrity and most importantly your hard work. It is because of you that we can derive and obtain the opportunity and the privilege to serve our community and through that, our nation,” Tata wrote in a letter on the occassion of the 178th birth anniversary of Tata Trusts founder Jamsetji Nusserwanji Tata. The year also marks 125th year of the philanthropic organization.
The seeds of Tata Trusts were sown in 1892 in the form of the JN Tata Endowment. Then came Sir Ratan Tata trust in 1919, Sir Dorabji Tata Trust in 1932, the JRD Tata Trust in 1944, the Navajbai Ratan Tata Trust Jamsetji Tata Trust in 1974 and the Tata Education and Development Trust in 2008.
Its themes of engagement include healthcare, water, rural upliftment, energy, education, relief, rehabilitation and individual grants. Its endowments have led to the creation of institutes such as the Indian Institute of Science, Tata Memorial Hospital, Tata Institute of Social Sciences and the National Centre for the Performing Arts.
Tata Trusts was however recently in the news following questions on its governance structure and ambit of power, raised by former Tata Sons chairman Cyrus Mistry. Mistry was ousted on October 24, 2016 leading to one of the biggest feuds in India’s corporate history between him and the conglomerate.
On February 21, N. Chandrasekaran, former CEO of TCS,took over as the new chairman of the Tata group.
In a letter of encouragement to his employees–similar-intentioned but differently-focussed than Tata’s today– he said the conglomerate can achieve higher shareholder value and business performance only by focussing relentless on customers and reinvent its businesses through innovation.
Stressing on customer-focus, higher employee-engagement and an increased stress on idea-sharing, Chandra said the group needs to work together to excel and be ranked among the top performers in the respective industries it is present in.