Ratans childhood was troubled, his parents separating in the mid 1940s, when he was about seven and his younger brother Jimmy was five. He was schooled at the Campion School, Mumbai and graduated from Cornell University in 1962 with a degree in Architecture and Structural Engineering. Ratan Tata holds a B.Sc. (Architecture) degree with structural engineering from Cornell University, USA and has completed the Advanced Management Program at Harvard Business School, USA. He joined the Tata Group in December 1962, after turning down a job with IBM on the advice of JRD Tata.
He was first sent to Jamshedpur to work at Tata Steel. Ratan Tata, a shy man, rarely features in the society glossies, has lived for years in a book crammed, dog filled bachelor flat in Mumbais Colaba district. Ratan Tata has his own capital in Tata Sons., the holding company of the group. Though his share is just about 1%, his personal holding is valued at US$ 1 Billion. If all the value of this is added his Net Worth is estimated at around US$ 50 Billion, making Ratan N. Tata one of the richest people in the world. JRD Tata with his successor Ratan Tata in 1971, Ratan was appointed the Director in Charge of the National Radio & Electronics Company Limited (Nelco), a company that was in dire financial difficulty. Ratan suggested that the company invest in developing high technology products, rather than in consumer electronics. In 1991, he took over as group chairman from J.R.D. Tata, pushing out the old guard and ushering in younger managers. Since then, he has been instrumental in reshaping the fortunes of the Tata Group, which today has the largest market capitalization of any business house on the Indian Stock Market. On March 26, 2008, Tata Motors, under Ratan Tata, bought Jaguar & Land Rover from Ford Motor Company. The two iconic British brands, Jaguar and Land Rover, were acquired for $2.3 billion. Ratan Tatas dream was to manufacture a car costing Rs 100,000. He realized his dream by launching Nano in New Delhi Auto Expo on January 10, 2008.