New Delhi: In what could be the biggest banking fraud in India, state-owned Punjab National Bank has said it has detected a USD 1.77 billion scam in which billionaire jeweller Nirav Modi allegedly acquired fraudulent letters of undertaking from one of its branches for overseas credit from other Indian lenders.
Here are 10 things you want to know about the billionaire diamantiere
- Nirav Modi comes from a family of diamond brokers in Antwerp, Belgium. He studied finance at Wharton but dropped out within a year.
- After dropping out of Wharton, Modi came to Mumbai to learn the nuances of tading from his maternal uncle Mehul Choksi, chairman of Gitanjali Gems.
- He made a late entry into the retail business in 2010. He is the founder and creative director of the Nirav Modi chain of diamond jewellery retail stores.
- He is also the Chairman of Firestar International, a trading arm of the parent of the Nirav Modi chain.
- Hollywood A-listers like Kate Winslet, Dakota Johnson, Taraji P Henson have walked the red carpet wearing diamonds of his brand.
- Priyanka Chopra was roped in as brand ambassador of his company last year.
- In 2013, he made first it to the Forbes’ billionaires list. He was ranked 57 in the Forbes list of billionaires in 2017.
- He was the first Indian jeweller to be featured on the cover of the Christie’s catalogue, one of the prestigious accolades he’s collected along the way.
- Modi has bought into Frederick Goldman, that gave him access to outlets such as JC Penney, Sears and even Walmart. Frederick Goldman was his biggest customer in the US and was seven times his own company’s size at the time of buyout.
- The billionaire diamantaire, whose jewellery creations are popular among global celebrities, has two boutiques in Delhi and Mumbai. He has several boutiques worldwide including Hawaii, Las Vegas, New York, London, Kuala Lumpur, Singapore, Beijing, Macau and Hongkong.