The man who revolutionised the Indian small car market in the late 1990s, is no more.
SG Awasthi, the former chairman-and-managing director (CMD) of Daewoo Motors India Limited and former managing director of Jaypee Hotels, passed away on Thursday, (September 22) at the age of 79.
Awasthi was known in the Indian automotive Industry for his unmatched business acumen and management skill. He has been credited with epitomising value-based leadership in India in the 1990s-2000s.
An alumnus of the oldest engineering institution in India, Roorkee College of Engineering, Awasthi joined the Tata Group in 1966 and worked his way through the ranks at TELCO in Jamshedpur.
In 1984, Awasthi joined the DCM Group of Companies and with his sheer determination and hard work climbed the ladder of success to take charge as the Managing Director of the company in 1991.
He caused a buzz in the small car competition in India by launching Daewoo’s hatchback edition, Matiz. “It will be the jeans among cars, trendy with high utility. Don’t take us lightly,” he once famously said.
In 2000, Awasthi left Daewoo Motors and joined the Jaypee Group as Managing Director of Jaypee Hotels Ltd and later also took charge as the Vice chairman of Jaypee Greens Ltd.
He stepped down from his position owing to health concerns in September 2007, but continued to serve as an Advisor in Jaypee Infratech Limited, a wholly owned subsidiary of Jaiprakash Associates Limited, for the next few years.
He also served as the Non-Executive Independent Director of Bharat Gears Limited until 2017.
Awasthi was also on the board of several other important committees. He was the Chairman of UP State Council of the CII, the India-Korea Committee in 1995, CII’s Regional Council Committee, Committee on Infrastructure of SIAM and SIAM Committee on Project Clean Air & Vehicular Emission.
He is survived by his wife and two sons.