India's top executives earn staggering salaries, far exceeding the average pay of their employees. These exceptional individuals not only lead prominent conglomerates but also command some of the highest incomes in the Indian business realm. In a country where the topic of CEO salary ignites curiosity and sparks discussions, comprehending the intricacies of executive remuneration becomes vital.
In this article, let's take a closer look at the salaries of the highest-paid CEOs in India, delving into the awe-inspiring figures that epitomize the financial rewards of leadership at the highest levels of corporate authority.
- C Vijayakumar
- Thierry Delaporte
- C P Gurnani
- S N Subrahmanyan
- Salil Parekh
- Rajiv Bajaj
- Saugata Gupta
- T. V. Narendran
- Gopal Vittal
- Mukesh Ambani
- Mohit Malhotra
- Natarajan Chandrasekaran
- Pawan Munjal
- Rajesh Gopinathan
- Ajay Srinivasan
- Vivek Gambhir
- Varun Berry
- Vipin Sodhi
Highest-Paid CEOs in India
Listed below are the highest-paid CEOs and their salaries in India, showcasing the extraordinary earnings of these industry leaders:
|Company||HCL Technologies Ltd|
|Salary||INR 130+ crore (FY22)|
C Vijayakumar, the CEO and Managing Director of HCL Technologies Ltd stands out as one of the most highly compensated top executives in the Indian IT industry. He holds a Bachelor's Degree in Electrical and Electronics Engineering from PSG College of Technology. Vijayakumar joined the company in 1994 and was appointed CEO in 2016.
Vijayakumar's salary was last reported to be $16.52 million (approx Rs 131.08 crore) in FY22, which he received after getting a two-year long-term incentive (LTI). This made C Vijayakumar the highest-paid Indian CEO among those working in Indian IT firms.
|Salary||INR 82.2 crore (FY23)|
Thierry Delaporte, the CEO and Managing Director of Wipro Limited, holds a bachelor's degree in economy and finance from SciencesPo Paris, and a Master of Laws from the Sorbonne University. He was appointed as CEO and MD of the company in July 2020 and has been dedicatedly serving in this role since then. Wipro, a global IT, consulting, and business process services company, is renowned for its valuable subsidiaries.
Thierry's earnings saw a notable increase from Rs 64.3 crore in FY21 to Rs 79.8 crore in FY22. In FY23, his earnings amounted to $10 million (Rs 82.2 crore), slightly lower than the previous year's $10.5 million (Rs 79.8 crore at that time).
C P Gurnani
|Salary||INR 63.4 crore (FY22)|
Another prominent name on the list of the highest CEO salaries in India is CP Gurnani. CP Gurnani, the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Tech Mahindra, is known for his leadership in spearheading the aggregation of Mahindra Satyam with Tech Mahindra. He is a chemical engineering graduate from the National Institute of Technology, Rourkela. Gurnani has an illustrious career, having held influential positions at Hewlett-Packard Ltd., Perot Systems (India) Ltd., and HCL Corporation Ltd. In addition, he served as Nasscom chairman for the year 2016–17.
The salary of CEO and MD, C P Gurnani was last posted at Rs 63.4 crore after he received a 189% hike in his compensation in FY22.
S N Subrahmanyan
|Company||Larsen & Toubro (L&T)|
|Salary||INR 61.27 crore (FY22)|
S.N. Subrahmanyan is the CEO and MD at Larsen & Toubro (L&T), an Indian multinational conglomerate specializing in engineering, manufacturing, construction, technology, and financial services. He also serves as Vice Chairman on the boards of LTI Mindtree and L&T Technology Services, Chairman at L&T Metro Rail (Hyderabad) Limited, and Director and Chairperson at L&T Finance Holdings Ltd. He joined L&T as a director in 2011. With a degree in civil engineering and a post-graduation in business management, Subrahmanyan brings a strong educational background to his role.
In FY22, he earned an impressive salary of Rs 61.27 crore as the CEO and MD of L&T India.
|Salary||INR 56.45 crore (FY23)|
Salil Parekh serves as the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Infosys. Prior to joining Infosys, Salil held various leadership positions for 25 years at Capgemini, where he was a member of the Group Executive Board. He has a Master of Engineering in Computer Science and Mechanical Engineering from Cornell University, as well as a Bachelor of Technology in Aeronautical Engineering from the IIT, Bombay.
In FY23, Salil Parekh's compensation experienced a 21% decrease, amounting to Rs 56.45 crore, compared to Rs 71 crore in the previous year.
|Salary||INR 39.86 crore (FY20)|
Rajiv Bajaj, the CEO, and Managing Director of Bajaj Auto, is known for his remarkable leadership in the Indian motorcycle manufacturing industry. He assumed the position in 2005 and was re-appointed as MD and CEO in 2020. He made the company one of the strongest ones in the country under his leadership, and since then it has never looked back. He changed the two-wheeler industry in India by introducing the Pulsar range of motorcycles. In 2017, he was ranked 42nd by India Today in their list of India's 50 Most Powerful People.
In 2020, Rajiv Bajaj's salary was reported to be Rs 39.86 crore.
|Salary||INR 36.1 crore (FY22)|
Saugata Gupta, the CEO and Managing Director of Marico Limited holds a B.Tech degree in Chemical Engineering from IIT Kharagpur and a PGDM in Marketing from IIM Bangalore. He joined Marico, a multinational consumer goods company from India in 2004 as the Head of Marketing. Saugata is one of the prime faces that is responsible for the company's success both in India and Internationally. Recently, he has been re-appointed as the CEO and MD for a term of two years, effective from April 1, 2024, to March 31, 2026.
Saugata Gupta's salary grew by a whopping 157% from Rs 14.02 crore in FY21 to Rs 36.1 crore in FY22. He emerged as the highest-paid CEO in the FMCG segment in FY22.
T. V. Narendran
|CEO||T V Narendran|
|Company||Tata Steel Limited|
|Salary||INR 19.5 crore (FY22)|
T. V. Narendran is the CEO and MD of Tata Steel Limited, one of the world's largest steel producers. He holds a degree in Mechanical Engineering from the National Institute of Technology (NIT) Trichy and an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Calcutta.
In FY21, he received a salary of Rs 15.58 crore. However, his FY22 package saw a significant increase, reaching Rs 19.5 crore, reflecting a growth of 25% compared to the previous year.
|Company||Bharti Airtel Limited|
|Salary||INR 15.25 crore (FY22)|
Gopal Vittal is the current CEO and Managing Director of Bharti Airtel Limited. He is an alumnus of Madras Christian College and has completed his MBA at IIM, Kolkata. Prior to joining Bharti Airtel, Gopal worked for twenty years at Unilever, where he excelled in various positions related to sales, marketing, and general management in markets spanning India, Thailand, Indonesia, and China. His diverse background and expertise have played a crucial role in shaping his leadership abilities.
In FY22, Gopal Vittal's salary witnessed a 5.8% increase, amounting to Rs 15.25 crore.
On the other hand, Bharti Airtel chairman Sunil Mittal’s remuneration fell nearly 5% in FY22 to Rs 15.39 crore.
|Company||Reliance Industries Limited|
|Salary||INR 15 crore (FY20)|
Mukesh Ambani, the Chairman and Managing Director of Reliance Industries, secured the second position on Brand Finance's list of top CEOs, while Jensen Huang, the CEO of Nvidia, claimed the first spot. This recognition highlights Ambani's outstanding brand guardianship and places him among the world's leading CEOs. Ambani surpassed notable executives like Satya Nadella of Microsoft and Sundar Pichai of Google to rank first among Indian and Indian-origin CEOs on the Brand Guardianship Index 2023.
Mukesh Ambani's commitment to societal welfare was evident when he voluntarily forewent his salary for the years 2020–21 and 2021–22 in response to the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic in India. Furthermore, he has limited his annual pay to Rs 15 crore since 2008-2009, setting an example of moderation in executive compensation.
|Company||Dabur India Limited|
|Salary||INR 14.60 crore (FY22)|
Mohit Malhotra serves as the CEO of Dabur India Limited, a renowned consumer products, and Ayurvedic company. Under his leadership, Dabur has expanded its reach globally. Mohit holds a management degree from Pune University and an Executive Masters's in International Business from the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade, New Delhi. His journey with Dabur began in 1994 as a management trainee, where he excelled in various roles in marketing and sales. He later became the CEO of Dabur International, based in Dubai, before assuming his current position as CEO of the company's India business in April 2019.
Mohit Malhotra received Rs 14.60 crore as his salary in FY22, which increased by 42.85% from the Rs 10.22 crore in remuneration he received in FY21.
Former Highest-Paid CEOs in India
The following list comprises the former highest-paid CEOs who have either undergone significant transformations or stepped down from their positions:
|Salary||INR 109 crore (FY22)|
Natarajan Chandrasekaran is the Chairman of Tata Sons. He was voted the best CEO for five consecutive years by Institutional Investor's Annual All-Asia Executive Team. During the financial year 19, he received a package of Rs 65 crore. Chandrasekaran, the first non-Parsi to head the Tata Group, transitioned from his CEO role to become the Chairman of the Board at Tata Sons, the holding company and promoter of all Tata Group companies. His appointment as Chairman followed a remarkable 30-year career at Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), where he served as the CEO and Managing Director. In 2021-2022, he received a salary package of Rs 109 crore.
|Salary||INR 84.59 crore (FY20)|
Pawan Munjal, the former CEO of Hero MotoCorp, has assumed the position of Executive Chairman and Whole-Time Director on the company's Board. Niranjan Gupta has been appointed as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Hero MotoCorp in March 2023, the country's largest two-wheeler manufacturer.
Pawan Munjal's salary for the FY 2020 was reported to be Rs 84.59 crore.
|Company||Tata Consultancy Services|
|Salary||INR 30 crore (FY23)|
Rajesh Gopinathan, the former CEO and Managing Director of Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), has made significant contributions to the success of the global IT solutions and consulting firm. In March 2023, he decided to step down from his position as CEO and MD to pursue other interests. TCS marked a new chapter on June 1, 2023, as it welcomed its new CEO and MD, K Krithivasan. Gopinathan is an electrical and electronic engineer, who graduated from REC Trichy (now NIT, Trichy), and has a Post-Graduate Diploma in Management from IIM, Ahmedabad.
In FY23, TCS paid approximately Rs 30 crore to its former CEO, Rajesh Gopinathan.
|Company||Aditya Birla Capital|
|Salary||INR 28.22 crore (FY21)|
Ajay Srinivasan, the former CEO of Aditya Birla Capital, joined the company in 2007. Prior to that, he was also the chief executive officer of fund management at Prudential Corporation Asia. The graduate from IIM Ahmedabad immediately became the CEO after his joining. His salary was Rs 28.22 crore in FY21.
In April 2022, Aditya Birla Capital announced that Vishakha Mulye would assume the position of Chief Executive Officer (CEO) following the departure of current CEO Ajay Srivinasan.
|Company||Godrej Consumer Products|
|Salary||INR 20.09 crore (FY19)|
Vivek Gambhir was the former CEO and MD of Godrej Consumer Products Ltd. (GCPL). He spearheaded GCPL’s famous 3 by 3 strategy. Apart from this, Vivek is a founding member of Bain’s consulting operations in India. He is a Harvard MBA and the president of the Harvard Business School in India.
Vivek Gambhir's salary was more than Rs 20 crore in FY19, making him the highest-paid FMCG executive that year. Later, he resigned from the company in 2020. Currently, Vivek Gambhir is the CEO of boAT, India’s leading audio and wearable brand.
|Salary||INR 11.47 crore (FY22)|
Varun Berry (former CEO and MD, Britannia) got elevated to the position of Executive Vice-Chairman and Managing Director in 2022. He holds a graduate degree in engineering (BE Mechanical) from Panjab University. Varun has over 32 years of experience with premier companies like Hindustan Unilever and Pepsico. With Varun's elevation, Britannia appointed Rajneet Kohli as its new executive director and CEO.
Varun Berry received a salary worth Rs 11.47 crore in FY22, a jump from Rs 10.52 crore in FY21.
|Salary||INR 10.7 crore (FY21)|
Vipin Sondhi took on the role of CEO at Ashok Leyland in 2019, a renowned Indian multinational automotive manufacturer and the country's second-largest commercial vehicle manufacturer. As an alumnus of IIM Ahmedabad, he led the company with distinction and received a salary of INR 10.7 crore in FY21. However, he later decided to step down as Managing Director and CEO in December 2021.
The CEOs mentioned above are truly remarkable individuals who have not only revolutionized their respective companies but have also become beacons of inspiration for budding entrepreneurs, ambitious students, and professionals across India. The substantial salaries they command are a testament to the immense value they bring to their organizations, showcasing their exceptional expertise and strategic acumen. As we celebrate their extraordinary achievements, we acknowledge the pivotal role played by CEOs in shaping the future of India's business landscape and propelling our nation's economic growth.
Who is the CEO?
A Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is the most senior corporate, executive, or administrative officer in charge of managing an organization, especially an independent legal entity such as a company or nonprofit institution.
To whom does the CEO report?
As the top manager, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) is typically responsible for the corporation's entire operations and reports directly to the Chairman and the Board of Directors.
How much has the average CEO salary increased in India?
The average CEO compensation in India has increased by 21% in the last four years, reaching ₹8.4 crores in 2023, according to a study by Aon.
What is Wipro's CEO's salary?
In FY23, Thierry Delaporte, CEO of Wipro,'s earnings amounted to $10 million (Rs 82.2 crore).
Who is the highest-paid Indian CEO working in an IT firm?
C Vijayakumar is the highest-paid Indian CEO who is working in an Indian IT firm, HCL Technologies after he received a salary of Rs 130+ crore in FY22.
What is Natarajan Chandrasekaran's salary?
Natarajan Chandrasekaran, Chairman of Tata Sons, received a salary package of Rs 109 crore in 2021-2022.
Who are the highest-paid CEOs in India?
Some of the highest-paid CEOs in India are:
- C Vijayakumar
- Thierry Delaporte
- Salil S Parekh
- C.P. Gurnani
- Gopal Vittal
- S.N. Subrahmanyan