In the spotlight at Godrej, Nyrika banks on consumer business for growth

Nyrika Holkar is the fourth-generation member of the Godrej family
Her mother is the richest woman in India and her uncle is at the helm of one the oldest business families in the country. But, 37-year-old Nyrika Holkar wears all of this lightly.

Daughter of Smita Crishna--the wealthiest Indian woman according to the Kotak Wealth-Hurun Report, 2018—and niece of Jamshyd Godrej, the chairman and managing director of Godrej & Boyce, Holkar has been steering the company for the past two years. As executive director, she has been driving talent management, legal and intellectual property management, and mergers and acquisitions.

A solicitor by training, Holkar now finds herself in the spotlight, with her cousin Navroze Godrej stepping down to pursue personal interest. He was inducted in to the company a decade back as a management trainee and till a few months ago, was in charge of strategy and innovation as an ED. Now, he is non-executive director.

Holkar worked at Zia Mody’s AZB & Partners before being inducted into Godrej & Boyce. She is the only fourth-generation member of the Godrej family on the board. Her other cousin, Raika Godrej—sister of Navroze Godrej —is not involved in the business.

Holkar, married to Yeshwant Rao—the scion of the Indore royal family, said she was counting on the consumer-facing businesses of the company to drive growth.

“We are looking at the consumer space aggressively,” she said.

“Since we have a lot of products in this vertical, including furniture, appliances and security solutions, giving consumers an integrated offering will be the next step for us. We see this as a differentiator and we are working on platforms where this integration could happen in the future,” Holkar added.

As part of this plan, Holkar wants to bring together all of Godrej & Boyce’s home solutions under the “One Godrej” retail concept. At experience centres—“U & Us” — consumers will be able to see all products under one roof.

The company hopes to reach 20 key markets in India with an expanded network of 50 such centres in the next few years, Holkar said.

The company will also enhance its design and innovation capabilities, grow its omni-channel presence, and co-create as well as customise products based on consumer feedback, she said.

The Rs 10,000-crore Godrej & Boyce, known for its manufacturing prowess, already derives around 55-60 per cent of its revenue from its consumer businesses. The balance comes from segments such as defence and aerospace engineering, where the company provides key components and parts for the Brahmos missile and launcher.

It also provides liquid propulsion engines, cryogenic engines, and satellite booster systems for the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) and has executed a number of orders both for ISRO and the Defence R&D Organisation over the years.

More recently, Holkar said the company had stepped into the civil aviation segment, supplying parts to companies such as Boeing and Rolls Royce. In precision engineering, where the company supplies equipment across industries, including steel and power, the priority for the firm will be wind, solar, and nuclear energy in the future.

Know her


  • Nyrika Holkar is the fourth-generation member of the Godrej family; daughter of Smita and Vijay Crishna, Holkar, 37, is a qualified solicitor
  • Was Inducted into Godrej & Boyce two years ago as ED
  • Has worked with Zia Mody's AZB & Partners earlier, where she specialised in M&A, private equity
  • At Godrej & Boyce, she manages talent, innovation, legal, M&A

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