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Through many of its busi­nesses—from locks, soaps and an­i­mal feed to en­gines pow­er­ing In­dia’s space pro­grammes—the group has played a big role in the evo­lu­tion of var­i­ous in­dus­tries in the coun­try. The group has its roots in In­dia’s In­de­pen­dence and swadeshi move­ment. Founder Ardeshir Go­drej failed in a few ven­tures be­fore strik­ing suc­cess with the locks busi­ness. Next came se­cu­rity equip­ment and steel fur­ni­ture. From soaps, it moved to de­ter­gents

and per­sonal/ house­hold prod­ucts. Since veg­etable oil was used to make soap, the byprod­uct, oil cake, was mar­keted as an­i­mal feed. With a large land­hold­ing in Vikhroli near Mumbai, the group also for­ayed into real es­tate.

The Go­drej group en­joys the pa­tron­age of 1.1 bil­lion con­sumers glob­ally and com­mands a rev­enue of over $4.1 bil­lion. In 1918, the com­pany launched Chavi, the first soap in the world with­out an­i­mal fat. An­other soap, Go­drej No. 2, was launched in 1919. Ardeshir’s ex­pla­na­tion on the name: “If peo­ple find No. 2 so good, they’ll be­lieve No. 1 to be even bet­ter!” The Go­drej No. 1 soap was launched in 1922. Go­drej

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