Kalanithi Maran

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Kalanithi Maran
Born 1964[1]
Tamil Nadu, India
Alma mater University of Scranton (MBA)
Occupation Chairman & MD, Sun Group
Known for Founder of Sun Group
Net worth $ 3.5 billion (2011)[2]
Spouse(s) Kaveri Kalanithi Maran
Children Kaviya Kalanithi Maran

Kalanithi Maran (Tamil: கலாநிதி மாறன்; born 1964) is an Indian media baron who is the chairman and Managing Director of Sun Group, which was the most profitable television network in Asia.[3][4]

In June 2010, he acquired Spice Jet which was the most profitable[5] airlines in India.[6][7] While his television channels and newspapers are primarily concentrated in South India, his FM radio stations, DTH service and Airlines are spread across the country

Early life[edit]

  • Born on 24.07.1964
  • Schooling at Don Bosco, Egmore, Chennai.
  • In Loyola College, Chennai he became the student’s union chairman and led an agitation on the Sri Lankan Tamils issue [2].
  • Has an MBA from the University of Scranton.
  • Returning to India in 1987, he worked for Kungumam Tamil Magazine owned by his family in the late 1980s.

Business expansion[edit]

In 1990, Maran started a monthly video (VHS) news magazine in Tamil called Poomaalai which was stopped in 1992 due to piracy.[citation needed] On April 14, 1993, he founded Sun TV with an investment of US $86,000 from a bank loan.[8][9] Sun TV was listed on the Bombay Stock Exchange on April 24, 2006 upon raising $133 million.[10] He was among the few representatives at a roundtable with the visiting then U.S. President Bill Clinton.[11]

By 2010, he was the 17th richest Indian with net worth of US$ 4 Billion,[12] and he is the highest paid business man in India.[13] During his visit to Mumbai in 2010, U.S. President Barack Obama praised Kalanithi Maran's spicejet as one of the job creators in USA[14] Maran and his wife, Kavery Maran were second in the list of Indian executive pay charts with a package of Rs. 57.01 crore each for the fiscal 2011-2012, behind Congress MP Naveen Jindal.[15]

He has won Young Businessman awards from CNBC and ERNST & Young,[16] and Forbes magazine named him the "Television king of southern India".[17] In 2010 he won the News Television Entrepreneur of the Year award.[18][19]

Business entities[edit]


He is the son of the Former Union Minister of commerce Murasoli Maran and the brother of India's former textile minister Dayanidhi Maran. He married Kaveri, a native of Coorg, (Karnataka) in 1991 and has a daughter named Kaviya (Born 1992).[20] His wife is the Joint Managing Director of Sun network. He proved to be successful in spite of his father's political rivals ruling the state for most of the period since he entered the media business. He also emerged as No. 1 in neighboring states where his competitors include politicians and business men from those states.

Dispute with Karunanidhi's family[edit]

In May 2007 followers of Karunanidhi's son M K Azhagiri attacked Maran's newspaper office after a survey in the newspaper claimed people prefer Dhayanidhi Maran as a Chief minister Over M K Stalin and Azhagiri.[21] Later in Dec 2008 it was claimed that dispute between Maran and Karunanidhi Families was resolved.[22]

Allegations in Aircel-Maxis Deal[edit]

The Central Bureau of Investigation are poised to file a chargesheet against his brother, Dayanidhi Maran who was former Telecom Minister in Manmohan Singh's ministry, in UPA I, from May 26, 2004 to May 13, 2007. In a status report to the Joint Parliamentary Committee on telecom, CBI said mala fide considerations and an "illegal gratification" of Rs 549 crore were behind the "active intervention" of Dayanidhi in curbing the business interests of Aircel's former owner C Sivasankaran. Alleging the Marans of arm-twisting former Aircel owner, Sivasankaran into selling Aircel to Maxis, the CBI report states that an illegal gratification of Rs 549,96,01,793 was accepted as quid pro quo through his brother Kalanithi Maran in the garb of share premium invested in Sun Direct, owned by Kalanithi Maran.[23] [24] [25]


  1. ^ http://www.ghallabhansali.com/admin/file/Kalanidhi%20Maran.pdf
  2. ^ "Kalanithi Maran". Forbes. Retrieved 2011-12-21. 
  3. ^ "From cable TV to aviation biz, Maran’s march continues". Financialexpress.com. 2010-07-13. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  4. ^ "Sun, Zee remain top on profitability charts". Rediff.com. 2004-12-31. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  5. ^ "Strategic investor crucial for global foray". The Times Of India. 2010-04-06. 
  6. ^ "New deal to take SpiceJet higher". Business-standard.com. 2010-06-15. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  7. ^ "Kalanidhi Maran buys 37.7 p.c. stake in SpiceJet". The Hindu (Chennai, India). 2010-06-13. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  8. ^ Karmali, Naazneen (2009-11-30). "Strong Signal". Forbes.com. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  9. ^ "Rediff India Abroad, April 28, 2006 - Kalanithi Maran: A 'Sunshine' story, by Sanjiv Shankaran and S. Bridget Leena in New Delhi". Ia.rediff.com. Retrieved 2012-01-24. 
  10. ^ Bharatan, Shilpa (2006-03-27). "Variety.com, Monday, April 24, 2006, 6:36pm PT - Sun TV shines on Exchange". Variety.com. Retrieved 2012-01-24. 
  11. ^ "Media Personalities - Kalanidhi Maran". Chennai Best. Retrieved 2012-01-24. 
  12. ^ "#17 Kalanithi Maran". Forbes. 2010-09-29. 
  13. ^ "Newsmaker: Kalanithi Maran". Business-standard.com. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  14. ^ http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2010/11/06/remarks-president-meeting-with-ceos-mumbai-india
  15. ^ "Naveen Jindal tops executive pay chart with Rs 73.4 crore package". The Economic Times. 
  16. ^ "Welcome To Sun Network". Sunnetwork.org. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  17. ^ "#20 Kalanithi Mar". Forbes.com. 2009-11-18. Retrieved 2010-08-08. 
  18. ^ e4m INBA 2010: Industry honours the contributions of Kalanidhi Maran, Rajdeep Sardesai, G Krishnan, Barkha Dutt, Shazi Zaman, among others
  19. ^ eINBA 2010: And the award goes to...
  20. ^ "MEDIA MARAN". Tehelka. 2007-06-09. Retrieved 22 July 2013. 
  21. ^ "Warring sons shadow DMK's sun". CNN-IBN. 2011-05-10. Retrieved 2011-12-21. 
  22. ^ [1][dead link]
  23. ^ "Hello? Who will bell this cat". Tehelka. 2011-06-04. 
  24. ^ "Marans got Rs 550cr bribe in Aircel-Maxis deal: CBI". The Times Of India. 2012-07-27. 
  25. ^ "Probe over, CBI soon to file chargesheet against Marans". The Pioneer. 2012-09-11. 

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