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Ronnie Screwvala

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If television is nothing but automated day-dreaming, it’s safe to say Ronnie Screwvala has altered our waking life.

Once a qualified actor, Screwvala first began to re-tune our frequencies in 1981, when he became involved with the country’s first organized cable service venture. His Mumbai-based company UTV Software Communications is a major stakeholder in four of India’s most rapidly booming industries — television, films, broadcasting and new media.Following an instinct for high-risks and high rewards, the dynamic 56-year-old is frequently compared to Jack Warner for setting new standards of studio efficiency in the mammoth and chaotic Indian film industry. Known in the corridors of UTV as the fastest decision-maker around, Screwvala’s company has backed projects like Mira Nair’s The Namesake, Manoj Night Shyamalan’s The Happening, and Chris Rock’s project I Think I love My Wife. Recently, The Walt Disney Company bought UTV for an enterprise value of $ 1.4 billion.Additionally, Screwvala has focused his sights on rural entrepreneurship and committed through his Swades Foundation to empower the lives of 1 million people in Rural Maharashtra by 2017. The Swades Foundation has adopted a holistic 360 degree approach with interventions across water & sanitation, health, education and livelihood & agriculture. The Foundation has committed an initial amount of $ 50 million in its first tranche and aims to transform peoples lives & create a permanent irreversible change for good.Whether it applies to changing what we see on television or in the world around us, Screwala’s motto is simple — I’m original, so I only want the original.

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