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Kingfisher Airlines and United Breweries Group
Even as his posher-than-posh Kingfisher Airlines racks up losses quarter after quarter, Vijay Mallya is a businessman to watch in India. Cigar-smoking, party-loving, but also a work-a-holic, he has the enviable position of producing beer and liquor in a largely untapped market. His Kingfisher beer is ubiquitous in India, and with the $1.2 billion purchase of Whyte and Mackay in 2007, he got a chance to sell premium scotch to the world's largest whiskey market.