You are a product of your surroundings and that of the environment you grow up with. When we associate with anything for long we become what we associate ourselves with. We have heard of the proverbs, “as is the father so is the son; as is the mother, so are the children; as is the king, so are the subjects; as is the boss, so is the employee. Extrapolating further…”As is Annamalai Chettiar, so is Rajah Muthiah Chettiar;” “as is Rajah Muthiah Chettiar so is AR. Ramaswamy who has been Rajah Sir Muthiah’s personal assistant for 40 years.” “As is AR. Ramaswamy so is his son RM. Rajendran !!” Rajendran with his parents were staying in the quarters at Chettinad House where Rajah Muthiah Chettiar lived. That was for more than 2 decades.
A person who follows a leader becomes a leader. All the character traits of the leader is mentally transferred to the person. In the same way many of Sir Rajah Muthiah Chettiar’s attributes were passed on to Mr AR. Ramaswamy. That includes honesty, straightforwardness, following morals and ethics, treating rich and poor alike, doing welfare to the society by providing education besides food for the poor, importance to family, liberal donation to temples. When you live in close proximity with a person with the caliber of Rajah Sir Muthiah Chettiar for 2 decades one would acquire those characteristics and Rajendran’s life is a living affidavit.
Rajendran did his schooling from Rajah Muthiah High School, did PUC from Vivekananda College and Mechanical Engineering from Annamalai University in the last 5 year batch 1979 – 1984. Soon after graduation he joined Simpsons and was in charge of the production department where they were manufacturing diesel engine parts. Simultaneously in the evenings after office hours he was dealing with leather chemicals. His interest in trading slowly intensified, in 1989 June, when he got into wholesale paper business, quit his job at Simpsons which was highly labor driven. His brother Mr Venkat joined the business. Rajendran owes to his senior Mr ARM. Govindarajan (1981 M & P) and his father Mr Marimuthu in the paper industry who helped him during his early days by giving him a vital breakthrough.
In 1995 Rajendran and his brother started a construction company in the name of Ar. Ramaswamy Estates and Investments private Limited. Their first work was demolition and construction of a 70,000 sft commercial complex in Madurai called as Spencer complex. The work got completed in 1998 and their next assignment was a 70,000 ware house in Madurai. Next was a 30,000 sft incubation centre in Trichy, followed by Sarada’s showroom in Pondicherry and VHS hospital additional blocks at Taramani.
In the year 2000, they took the distribution for Indigo Nation and Scullers in entire Tamilnadu. In 2002 they took wholesale of Jockey distribution and in 2017 they took Van Heusen distribution of innerwear. As on today they have 5 showrooms in Chennai.
Between 2002 – 2004 they constructed Ar. Villa in Adyar, between 2008 and 2010 – they promoted 26 luxury apartments in a ¾ acre at Velachery, between 2011 and 2014 they developed and promoted 18 deluxe apartments at Velachery, besides 81 apartments at Thoraipakkam in a 1.26 acre area. Between 2013 to 2015 they developed and promoted 32 premium apartments opposite Express Mall. Now they are developing Beach villas at Uthandi on ECR. So far they would have constructed 7,00,000 sft out of which 4,00,000 would have been residential and 3,00,000 would be commercial. Rajendran’s son Chidambaram an Engineer with Management degree joined their business in 2013 and supporting them ably.
Their company gives a lot of importance to people and products and if these two are taken care of profits automatically follows !! They are a highly process driven company and also professionally managed. After sales – service is their USP, and people who have bought from them more than a decade ago testify the quality of materials and workmanship which was never compromised.
Besides commercials they have done the major portion of Iyyappan temple at R.A. Puram right from start to finish. They have renovated their 40,000 sft home at Athangudi which is up and shining like a new building although it is about 100 years old.
Rajendran with his parents, 2 brothers and their families with their children and grand-children stay in in a joint-family setup. They are first generation entrepreneurs. Being with Sir Rajah Muthiah Chettiar has accredited with virtues including kindness, honesty, helping tendency, uprightness, prioritizing family as first, never to bend for money and power, follow business ethics, observing morals in everyday life.
They look after the education of their staff’s children, health and welfare of their staff and their families, provide to the downtrodden, educate and feed the poor.
They have plans of promoting large scale apartment complex in the near future besides opening more showrooms of Van Heusen.