Ambiga Subramanian has made history by becoming the first woman to serve as the CEO of an Indian unicorn company valued at more than Rs 8,200. Ambiga Subramanian, a former CEO of the data analytics firm Mu Sigma and one of India’s eight richest self-made women, is now the youngest millionaire. The Hurun India Rich List 2017 was produced by Shanghai-based research firm Hurun Report. Subramanian, the fourth-place finisher with a net worth of more than Rs 2,500 crore, was surpassed by Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw, the chairwoman of Biocon. Sheela Gautam and Vembu Radha are standing behind Subramanian. On the Hurun India Rich List, Indians with worth of more than Rs 1,000 crore are listed.

Ambiga, who was born in Chennai, graduated from Anna University in Chennai with a bachelor’s degree in electrical engineering. At the College of Engineering, in Chennai, where they both studied electrical engineering, Subramanian and Rajaram first became friends in the early 1990s. Later, the two continued their studies in computer engineering at Wayne State University in Michigan. Rajaram worked for consulting firms like Booz Allen Hamilton and PwC before starting his own company with Mu Sigma, which he funded by selling his Illinois home and investing $200,000 of his personal savings. She started her career in 1998 with the American telecom major, Motorola, where she worked for eight years, as a research lead, and, in 2004, she began working for Mu Sigma, a data analytics company founded by her ex-husband Dhiraj Rajaram. However, she departed Illinois-based Mu Sigma in 2016 after experiencing a number of ups and downs in her personal life, including the separation from her husband. She had served as the company’s CEO and COO for several years.

Nevertheless, 2016 wasn’t quite as successful as it could have been due to an internal crisis the company had when Subramanian and Rajaram chose to get divorced. Many significant personnel departed the company during the crisis, causing instability and a loss of sales. Revenues for Mu Sigma decreased from $184 million to $165 million in the year that ended in December 2016, and the upheaval was ultimately resolved when Rajaram acquired Subramanian’s stake. Following their divorce in 2016, Subramanian transferred her 24% ownership in Illinois-based Mu Sigma to her ex-husband, Dhiraj Rajaram, the chairman and founder of the business. Rajaram took over as the company’s main shareholder after founding it in 2004 and later purchased stock options owned by his workers. The market value of Mu Sigma is thought to be $1.5 billion. In 2016, Forbes listed Subramanian as one of India’s top businesswomen. Ambiga Subramanian is currently working for her startup and avoiding the spotlight as best she can on her own terms.

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