Monday, February 15, 2010

M. Maher Dadha

"The Indian art market has an upside potential of 5-10 times, in the next 4-5 years, whereas the global market has a growth potential of a far less magnitude. With the high wealth creation that we currently see in the Indian economy, there is a great opportunity for our investors to look seriously at the art market, which has been giving a healthy and consistent return of 30-35 per cent (as per conservative estimates) over the last 4-5 years."

M. Maher Dadha, Chairman & MD, Bid & Hammer Auctioneers (P) Ltd

June 1, 12.30 pm
February 15, 2010, 3 pm


Murali said...


Hailing from the illustrious Dadha family, Maher is the youngest son of the late business tycoon L.M. Dadha and grandson of the legendary S.L. Dadha. Following his father’s tragic death in a plane crash in Bombay in 1976, he was entrusted with the early responsibility of spearheading the group’s foray into diverse new-era businesses ranging from a Gems & Jewellery Trading Corporation to a Safe Deposit Lockers facility and a Sisal Fibre & Manila Ropes plant to a Greenfield Reclaim Rubber unit, besides serving on the board of the flagship company ‘Tamil Nadu Dadha Pharmaceuticals Ltd.’

After the Group decided to exit the reclaim rubber business, Maher, proudly aware of his family’s distinguished background yet certain that he wanted to experience a life beyond running industries, decided to nurture his long-standing fascination for arts and antiques that had developed when he was traveling extensively in the country visiting major royal houses to source gems and jewellery way back in 1974. Thus, the desire to share the knowledge with admirers, collectors and connoisseurs took precedence above all else while at the same time presenting a unique business opportunity. Hence, along with the support of his wife Madhu, a law graduate, he started giving shape to an establishment that patronized old paintings, lithographs, antiquarian books, artifacts, etc. Subsequently, from 1992, he has been successfully running the well known gallery ‘Dukan-Fine Art & Antiques’ in Bangalore.

To quote him from an interview given to a magazine: ‘Antiques and Works of Art have a legacy behind them, speaking of love of life and beauty. These pieces of devoted work bring us closer to culture and heritage’.

Today, after more than 30 years of collecting and dealing, his passion remains undiminished if not greater and with his vision set on the future, he believes that an Indian auction house, that provides integrated art services across all categories of fine and decorative art and antiques, on the lines of the international players, would widen and deepen the art market in this country thus helping in a greater understanding of our rich cultural heritage.
Consequently, with his knowledge of the auctioneering trade coupled with his business experience and international contacts, the objective of ‘Bid & Hammer Auctioneers (P) Ltd’, under his stewardship, would be to comprehensively explore and develop the Indian art market in a way that has never before been achieved.

A brief history in time:

Born in 1954, Maher Dadha is the youngest son of the late business tycoon L.M. Dadha and grandson of the legendary S.L. Dadha of the erstwhile Chennai headquartered company ‘Tamil Nadu Dadha Pharmaceuticals Ltd’.

1974: Maher starts his career by setting up Dadha Gems Corporation. Travels extensively and visits major royal houses to source gems and antique jewellery

1977: Is instrumental in acquiring Alle Chemicals.

1978: Becomes a Director on the board of the flagship company ‘Tamil Nadu Dadha Pharmaceuticals Ltd.’

1985: Sets up a Safe Deposit Lockers business by the name of Dadha Securilockers (P) Ltd.

1987: Through a public issue, a Greenfield Reclaim Rubber unit is started, by the name of Dadha Brothers Ltd. Maher is the unit’s Managing Director.

1992: Sets up ‘Dukan’ to patronize works of art along with paintings , engravings and lithographs by well known ‘company school’ artists like Thomas Daniel, William Daniel, Robert Grindlay and Emily Eden besides works by Indian masters such as Raja Ravi Varma, K.C.S Panicker and Jamini Roy amongst others.

1994: Dukan conducts a thematic, by invitation only, ‘antiques show-and-sale’ in the summer of 1994 to test the market for its offerings, which is a great success.

2000: Maher publishes a book titled ‘Views of India – Connoisseurs Compendium’ which is a guide to collecting antiquarian prints, maps and books, specifically covering the work of British artists in India.

2001: His Highness Maharaja Gaj Singh II of Jodhpur releases ‘Illustrated Imperial Impression’, a newsletter published by Dukan to create an interest amongst the general public in understanding, appreciating and preserving ancient monuments and works of art.

2007: After 30 years of unflinching passion for art & antiques coupled with expertise, knowledge of the auctioneering trade and worldwide contacts, sets up ‘Bid & Hammer Auctioneers (P) Ltd’ with a team of renowned specialists and advisors.

Areas of Expertise:

Antiquarian Books, Maps & Prints (Lithographs, Engravings etc), Jewellery, Ceramics & Company School Paintings

Vision Statement:

“Over the years I have indulged in my passion for the arts and antiques and as a collector & dealer have bought and sold at auctions, both for myself and for my clients. Thus, with a firm conviction that an auction platform to buy and sell art makes the market more transparent and open besides encouraging people to appreciate the value of an art work - both aesthetically and monetarily – I feel that the time is now ripe in India for a full-service international auction house such as ‘Bid & Hammer’ that will further aid not only to the development of the still very nascent modern & contemporary Indian art market but also unearth the tremendous potential of decorative arts and antiques’’
Susan Jacob
Account Manager
Corporate Voice I Weber Shandwick
No. 2561, 16th D Main
HAL II Stage
Bangalore - 560 008
T: 91 - 80-4245 1231 I M: 97401 97317 I F: 91-80-25253887

Murali said...