Serum Institute of India (SII) CEO Adar Poonawalla is among the "emerging leaders" from across the world named by Fortune in its annual list of 40 most influential people under the age of 40. Byju Raveendran, co-founder of India's leading education technology company Byju's, Reliance Jio Board Directors Isha Ambani, and Akash Ambani are the other young guns from India to feature on the coveted list.
The 2020 Fortune 40 under 40 list highlights 40 influential people each in five categories of technology, healthcare, finance, media and entertainment, and government and politics from across the world.
On Poonawalla's debut in the coveted list, Fortune said "few people on the planet are more in demand right now than Poonawalla." He is the CEO of his family-owned company SII, which is the world's largest manufacturer of vaccines.
"This year, of course, has been far from normal. With the race to develop a vaccine for COVID-19 in full swing, SII, with its enormous manufacturing capacity, has been an obvious place for pharma companies to turn," it said.
SII has inked deals with both AstraZeneca and Novavax, committing to manufacture one billion doses of each vaccine, priced at $3 a shot, for low- and middle-income countries. The pharma company has expanded its geographical reach in recent years by acquiring production facilities in Czechoslovakia and The Netherlands and is also working to develop a couple COVID-19 vaccines itself, Fortune said.
The list also includes SoftBank Group Senior vice president, Investments, Akshay Naheta (39), Head of digital assets and distributed ledger technology (DLT) at TD Ameritrade Sunayna Tuteja, Global vice president Xiaomi and managing director, Xiaomi India Manu Kumar Jain (39), Maverick Ventures Managing director Ambar Bhattacharyya (37), PharmEasy Cofounders Dhaval Shah and Dharmil Sheth (31) and ACLU Chief product and digital officer Deepa Subramaniam (39).
(With inputs from PTI)