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‘Passion, devotion, conviction, commitment – four words that can change your life.’—A.M. Naik

Mumbai 16th May 2024: In 1964, A.M. Naik, a twenty-two-year-old engineering graduate, chanced upon a recruitment advertisement for Larsen & Toubro.

Despite almost botching up his final interview, Naik was hired. ‘I’ve sacked thirty-eight engineers – don’t be number thirty-nine’ is what Naik’s boss T. Baker told him on his first day at work. Thus began an era of relentless hard work, infectious zeal and remarkable achievements, which not only elevated Naik in the L&T hierarchy, but also helped transform the company into a multinational conglomerate with presence in more than fifty countries.

What makes Naik the energy powerhouse he is and a workaholic, even at eighty-one? What motivates him to forge selfless relationships? What is it about him that inspires those who work alongside him to walk that extra mile for any assignment?

A powerful story of grit and determination, passion and resilience, A.M. Naik: The Man Who Built Tomorrow presents a rare look at the person behind the leader and the many worlds he inhabits – from business and industry to nation-building and philanthropy. What’s next for the man whose motto in life is to    start walking towards the next goalpost as soon as one is achieved?

A.M. Naik, Chairman Emeritus, Larsen & Toubro says, “I have always considered myself fortunate to be in a position of service to nation, industry and society, while doing my bit to building a new tomorrow. I will be very happy if the lessons drawn from this journey from a small village to the world of business, prove useful to current and future generations.”

Priya Kumar says, “A.M. Naik is a university of insight and inspiration. Writing this book has been a journey of professional evolution for me, and I hope it inspires the same in its readers.”

Jairam N. Menon says, “Everyone knows that reading books is educative. I found writing can be even more so! Writing this book has been for me a lesson on how to dream bigger than I have ever dreamt before.’’

Sachin Sharma, Associate Publisher, HarperCollins says, “Mr. A.M. Naik’s exemplary life is a proof that hard work and passion can move mountains. While the success story of L&T and its inspirational architect is well known, Priya Kumar and Jairam Menon have done a brilliant job in bringing us the heart and mind of the  leader.


‘A.M. Naik is among those rare people who combine vision and execution. His deep sense of patriotism and keen intellect combined have enabled him to relentlessly pursue the mission of establishing India as a global leader in the manufacturing arena. Naik is an amazing leader, who can conceive bold ideas, transmit his passion to his team and then provide the leadership to realize those ideas.

His legendary people skills are well known. He always had the courage and the conviction to chart a new course of vision for his organization, one that combined the hallowed traditions of the enterprise with an entrepreneurial zeal, a nationalistic fervour and a strong emphasis on wealth creation.

It is this new avatar of Larsen & Toubro that most of us are familiar with today. The phenomenal journey of Naik captured in this book reinforces the age-old principle that in life, as in business, it doesn’t matter who you are or where you hail from. Your ability to excel in a chosen endeavour is determined solely by the path you have set for yourself. I am sure the youth of India, especially the budding entrepreneurs who are in the business of building lasting legacies, will have a lot to learn and gain inspiration from A.M. Naik and this book.’ —   Mukesh AmbaniChairman and Managing Director, Reliance Industries

 ‘Anil Manibhai Naik is an exceptional individual, whom I have had the pleasure of meeting on several occasions over the last three decades. A true nation-builder, he built an industry, equivalent to the best in the world, and has done so much for the country. Also, beyond his professional achievements, he has consistently shown a deep devotion to the community. It was a few years ago when Apollo had the opportunity to collaborate with the hospitals set up by his trust in Navsari, Gujarat. What I had previously only heard about became evident before my eyes: Naik is undoubtedly one of the world’s most outstanding business leaders. His unwavering dedication and entrepreneurial spirit transformed L&T into a unique global organization. Furthermore, as a philanthropist, his inspiring decision to establish hospitals in his birthplace to serve the community sets a remarkable example for young leaders to follow. Hopefully, with more business leaders participating in healthcare, we can gradually alleviate the shortage of health infrastructure in India.’ —   Dr Prathap C. Reddy, Founder–chairman, Apollo Hospitals

 ‘The best of professionals are focused on adding value through all their efforts. Clearly, A.M. Naik is an excellent example of such a professional.

Throughout his career, Naik has tried his best to add value to everything he has undertaken—leading a business, working with the government and engaging with people and societal issues. I have known him for years, and his dynamic and energetic leadership has always impressed me. He was significantly responsible for creating L&T’s IT business, which is now counted in the top bracket of the industry. This book is a must-read for those who want to learn from his rich experiences.’ —   Azim Premji, Founder–chairman, Wipro

 ‘Few people carry the flag of India Inc. as proudly as Mr A.M. Naik does. He can be aggressive, even combative, in defending the interests of his country and of the company of which he is at the helm. All of us in industry and business know that Naik’s heart is in the right place. I have known him for decades now, and our interactions have always been stimulating because he is restless with the status quo. He is bursting with creative energy and always wants to do something different. For those who may not know him so well, this biography gives a peek into his life and the remarkable work that he has done.’ —   Deepak Parekh, Former chairman, HDFC

 ‘Naik is more than a doyen of the industry. He is a multidimensional personality whom the Sanskrit description ashtavadhani fits. A natural-born leader, he is a rare visionary with a towering engineering mind and matching commercial expertise. Endowed with a matchless brain-and-brawn combination that challenged his age, he understands law, accounts, finance and economics like any domain expert. A compassionate philanthropist, Naik’s staunch nationalism crowns his strong personality. This book presents his full self.’ —   S. Gurumurthy, Writer, journalist and corporate advisor

 ‘Having served on the board of Larsen & Toubro and as a banker to the group, I am a first-hand admirer of the many facets of Naik—from the astute, hard-driving business leader to the gutsy entrepreneur, to—increasingly now—a committed and outcome-oriented philanthropist. There is a lot to learn from his zestful, never-say-die approach to life.’ —   Naina Lal Kidwai, Chairperson, Rothschild & Co


 Priya Kumar is the author of sixteen books, and a specialist in distilling the accomplishments of corporate figures, entrepreneurs and sports stars into inspirational biographies.

 Jairam N. Menon is a versatile writer, whose long experience of working in L&T, and in proximity to the corporate office, gave him a ringside view of A.M. Naik in action.


HarperCollins India publishes some of the finest writers from the Indian Subcontinent and around the world, publishing approximately 200 new books every year, with a print and digital catalogue of more than 3,000 titles across 10 imprints. Its authors have won almost every major literary award including the Man Booker Prize, JCB Prize, DSC Prize, The Erasmus Prize, New India Foundation Award, Atta Galatta Prize, Shakti Bhatt Prize, Gourmand Cookbook Award, Publishing Next Award, Tata Literature Live! Award, Gaja Capital Business Book Prize, BICW Award, Sushila Devi Award, Sahitya Akademi Award, and Crossword Book Award. HarperCollins India also represents some of the finest publishers in the world including Harvard University Press, Gallup Press, Oneworld, Bonnier Zaffre, Usborne, Dover, Nosy Crow, and Quarto. HarperCollins India is India’s most awarded publisher seven Publisher of the Year Awards (2015, 2016, 2018, two in 2021, 2022, and 2024). HarperCollins India is a subsidiary of HarperCollins Publishers

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