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History of ITC Group

06 June 20246 mins read by Angel One
ITC ltd. is one of the most respected companies in the financial markets. Let’s learn more about it in this article.
History of ITC Group
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ITC Limited, formerly known as the Imperial Tobacco Company of India, is an Indian multinational conglomerate that has its headquarters in Kolkata, West Bengal. ITC full form is Indian Tobacco company. ITC owner- Sanjiv Puri is the Chairman & Managing Director of ITC Limited.The company operates in various sectors such as Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG), Hotels, Paperboards and Packaging, Agri-Business, and Information Technology. ITC’s journey from being a tobacco company to a diversified conglomerate is an interesting one, and it spans over a century.

ITC Company history

The company was established in 1910 as the Imperial Tobacco Company of India Limited, as a subsidiary of the British American Tobacco Company. In its initial years, ITC primarily dealt with tobacco products, which included cigarettes, cigars, and pipe tobacco.

Over the years, ITC diversified its product portfolio, and in 1975, it entered the hospitality industry with the opening of its first hotel, the Chola Sheraton in Chennai. Today, ITC operates luxury hotels in major cities across India under the brands ITC Hotels, WelcomHotel, and Fortune Hotels.

In the 1980s, ITC expanded its operations to the paper and packaging industry, setting up a paper manufacturing plant in Bhadrachalam, Andhra Pradesh. The company also ventured into the agri-business sector, with a focus on exports of agri-commodities such as rice, wheat, and spices.

In the 1990s, ITC underwent a significant restructuring, following the retirement of its long-standing chairman, J. N. Sapru. Yogesh Chander Deveshwar, who had joined ITC in 1968, was appointed as the new chairman in 1996. Under Deveshwar’s leadership, ITC transformed into a diversified conglomerate with a focus on sustainable development.

In the early 2000s, ITC entered the FMCG sector with the launch of its flagship brand, “Classmate,” which included notebooks, pens, and other stationery products. The company also launched a range of food products under the brand “Kitchens of India,” which included ready-to-eat meals, spices, and condiments.

ITC history timeline

1910: The Imperial Tobacco Company of India Ltd. established and started ITC as a Private Limited Company on August 24.

1953: Acquisition of Tobacco Manufacturers (India) Ltd.’s production division.

1954: The Company was converted into a Public Limited Company on 27th October.

1970: In May, the company’s name—Imperial Tobacco Co. of India Ltd.—became India Tobacco Co. Ltd.

1972: ITC entered the hospitality industry.

1973: The government gave its approval for the construction of three processing plants.

1974: The name was once more altered to ITC Ltd on April 1st without any acronyms.

1975: Acquired the India Leaf Tobacco Development Co. Ltd.’s net assets in India.

1979: “Welcome Hotels” was replaced with “Welcomgroup” as the name of the company’s hotel chain.

1983: A joint arrangement between the Company and Gujarat Industrial Investment Corporation saw the incorporation of a new company named Gujarat Hotels. They built the Welcomegroup Vadodara, a 144-room hotel, in Vadodara.

1986: The Company and MP Audyogik Vikas Nigam entered into a joint venture arrangement to build four hotels over the following five years.

1987: The launch of two new products, Wills Flake Premium Filter and Scissors Filter. Additionally, the company leased the Nedovs Hotel in Kashmir.

1988: Various oilseed varieties sold under the trade names “ADARSH” and “SUNDROP” were introduced to the market.

1990: The market debut of refined mustard oil sold under the “REAL GOLD” trademark.

1993: Successfully launched Hero and Classic Milds brand Cigarettes.

1995: Redesigned the Gold Flake Kings and Berkley Filter and introduced the capstan Menthol filter, capstan standard, and Bristo standard. Additionally, Kingsize Gold Flake Lights were released into the test markets.

1996: The Classic Ultra Milds and Wills Natural Lights products were introduced by the company.

1997: Contract between ICICI Ltd. and ITC Classic Finance Ltd. was inked.

1998: ITC had close to 105 subsidiaries carrying out different kinds of business.

2000: the Packaging and Printing Section established the Lifestyle Retailing Business Division. Wills Sport, a complete line of luxury apparel for men and women with an international flair, was also introduced by ITC.

2003: On February 21, 2003, ITC Ltd. introduced the Spriha brand of natural incense sticks (Agarbathis) made by Village Industries.

As the second product from ITC Foods’ staple division to bear the brand name “Aashirvaad,” salt was launched by ITC on April 4. It also introduced a new line of agarbattis that same year.

2008: Introduction of Eco-friendly “Paperkraft Luxury Business Paper”.

2010: ITC prospered in the Rs. 1,700 crore fairness cream industry.

The Indian cigarette market draws in foreign brands; as a result, ITC, the largest domestic cigarette manufacturer and one of India’s leading private sector businesses, joined the Indian cigar market.

2011: ITC Ltd.’s CEO, Mr. Y. C. Deveshwar, received the Padma Bhushan. Well-known products like Classmate notebooks and John Players were introduced by ITC.

2012: Introduction of ITC’s top personal care brand’s distinctive Skin Nourishing Range of Soaps, called Vivel.

2014: ITC replaces TCS as the most admired business in India.

enters the e-cigarette industry.

One of the biggest international investments in Colombo history is made by ITC Hotels.

2017: ITC takes steps to help achieve Swachh Bharat.

2022: On March 31, 2022, Limited India was one of the most profitable FMCG businesses in India, with gross sales of 90,104 crores and a net profit of 15,058 crores.

ITC limited subsidiaries-

Here are some of the key subsidiaries of ITC Limited:

ITC Infotech: ITC Infotech is an information technology-focused division of ITC Limited that offers a range of services, including software creation, IT consulting, and digital transformation. The company has offices all over the globe and has expertise in a range of industries, including manufacturing, retail, and healthcare.

ITC Hotels: ITC Hotels, a subsidiary of ITC Limited that specialises in hospitality, has a fleet of more than 100 hotels spread out across India. The company’s hotels are well-known for their luxury and eco-friendly efforts, and they provide visitors with a wide range of facilities and services.

ITC Paperboards and Specialty Papers Division: The paper and packaging businesses of ITC Limited are handled by this division. It makes a range of papers, including writing and printing paper, specialty papers, and packaging boards.

ITC Agri Business Division: The job of obtaining, processing, and exporting agricultural goods like wheat, rice, coffee, and spices falls under the purview of ITC Limited’s Agribusiness division. The company works with Indian farmers to guarantee profitable and environmentally responsible agriculture.

ITC Foods: ITC Foods, the FMCG subsidiary of ITC Limited, offers a variety of packaged products, including snacks, biscuits, noodles, and instant mixtures. The company prioritises innovation and sustainability, and its products have received numerous awards.

ITC InfraTech: ITC InfraTech, a subsidiary of ITC Limited, is in charge of building the infrastructure for industrial parks, logistics centres, and special economic zones. The company has won praise for its green initiatives and puts a high priority on sustainability.

ITC Global Holdings: The holding company for the foreign operations of ITC Limited is ITC Global Holdings. It trades and exports a variety of commodities, including paper, engineering items, agricultural products, and paper, and has offices in Singapore, Dubai, and London.

Each of these subsidiaries has its own unique focus and expertise, but they all operate under the umbrella of ITC Limited. By diversifying its business across different industries, ITC Limited has been able to create a resilient and sustainable business model that can weather economic ups and downs. Additionally, the company’s strong focus on innovation and sustainability has allowed it to stay competitive in a rapidly changing business environment.


ITC Ltd., with its diverse business interests across a number of industries, is a significant participant in the Indian market. The company’s emphasis on innovation, social duty, and sustainability has been a major factor in its success, and it is well-positioned to keep expanding in the years to come. Now that you have learned about ITC ltd, which is one of the most reputed companies in the Indian stock market, open demat account with Angel One and start building your wealth.

Disclaimer – Please note that this article is for informational purposes only and should not be considered investment advice.

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