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Cornell alumnus who heads India's top business group to give Hatfield talk April 10

Ratan Tata, chairman of Tata Sons, the holding company of the Tata Group, India's largest and most successful business conglomerate, will give the 2006 Hatfield address, Monday, April 10, at 4:30 p.m. in Kennedy Hall's Call Alumni Auditorium on the Cornell University campus.

The talk is free and open to the public.

Tata, who earned a bachelor of architecture degree at Cornell in 1962, will deliver a talk, "The Imperative for Change in the India of Today." He will speak as the 26th Robert S. Hatfield Fellow in Economic Education, considered the highest honor the university awards to distinguished individuals from the corporate sector.

Under Tata's leadership, total revenues of the Tata Group have increased more than sixfold, to over $22 billion this year.

The group now has over 90 operating companies, employing about 220,000 people in seven business sectors. It operates in more than 40 countries and exports to 140. Some of its biggest holdings are Tata Steel, Taj Hotels Resorts and Palaces, India's pre-eminent hotel chain, and Tata Motors, an automobile manufacturer whose products include the first car designed in India. The family business began as a textile mill, launched under British colonial rule in 1860 by Tata's great-grandfather. Tata joined the Tata steel division in 1962 and became chairman of the conglomerate in 1991.

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Nicola Pytell