Market experts on Sunday mourned the death of ace investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, often referred to as India's Warren Buffet, and said his strong belief in the country's growth story and sheer energy made him one of a kind.
The 62-year-old Jhunjhunwala passed away on Sunday morning in Mumbai.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi, in a tweet, said, "Rakesh Jhunjhunwala was indomitable. Full of life, witty and insightful, he leaves behind an indelible contribution to the financial world. He was also very passionate about India’s progress. His passing away is saddening. My condolences to his family and admirers. Om Shanti."
Uday Kotak, CEO, Kotak Mahindra Bank said, "Rakesh Jhunjhunwala: my school and college mate. One year my junior. Believed stock India was undervalued. He is right. Amazingly sharp in understanding financial markets. We spoke regularly, more so during COVID. Will miss you Rakesh!"
Condoling his death, Zerodha co-founder Nikhil Kamath tweeted, "There will never again be someone like you, RIP."
Often referred to as 'India's Warren Buffett' and the Big Bull of Indian markets, Jhunjhunwala's net worth was USD 5.8 billion (about ₹46,000 crore), according to Forbes.
B Gopkumar - MD & CEO, Axis Securities, said Jhunjhunwala will be missed for the sheer energy he brought to the TV studios.
"His strong belief in India growth story and his bullishness on Indian markets are a tale of legend. He proved to each and everyone that if one stays invested in quality companies for long then wealth generation is almost assured," he added.
Another expert Sandeep Parekh said Jhunjhunwala was a legend whose folksy speeches could convince non-believers in the India story.
Hailing Jhunjhunwala as the biggest believer in the India story, Sushant Bhansali, CEO, Ambit Asset Management, said the ace investor put not only his words but his entire wealth behind this story and got rewarded for it.
Bhansali described Jhunjhunwala as a roaring titan of long-term investing in India.
"A man of passion, simplicity and high conviction he inspired millions of people to believe and invest in the equity participation with Indian corporates. A true legend we all will miss. Be it investor calls, conferences, business TV channels, his roaring presence will be truly missed," he added.
Jhunjhunwala started off his journey in stock markets while still in college with a capital of just ₹5,000. He began investing with ₹5,000 in 1985 when the BSE's benchmark index Sensex was at 150. It now trades at over 59,000.
He had investments in more than three dozen companies, the most valuable being watch and jewellery maker Titan, part of the Tata conglomerate. His portfolio included companies like Star Health, Rallis India, Escorts, Canara Bank, Indian Hotels Company, Agro Tech Foods, Nazara Technologies and Tata Motors.
He earned his first big profit in 1986 when he bought 5,000 shares of Tata Tea at ₹43 and the stock rose to ₹143 within three months. In three years, he earned ₹20-25 lakh.
His privately-owned stock trading firm Rare Enterprises derived its name from the first two letters of his name and that of his wife Rekha, who is also a stock market investor.
With inputs from PTI and Reuters.