Brijmohan Lall Munjal was born in 1923 at Kamalia, district Toba Tek Singh in unpartitioned Punjab, British India. Kamalia is now in Pakistan. He was from a simple middle-class Arora/Khatri family. After completing his formal education he worked at the Army Ordnance Factory, before moving his base to India after partition.
In 1954 Hero Cycles Ltd moved up the value chain by making a shift from supplying to manufacturing. They started manufacturing handlebars, front forks and chains. In 1956, the Punjab Government issued tender notices for twelve new industrial licenses to make bicycles in Ludhiana. Brijmohan Lall Munjal and his brothers participated in the bid and won the contract. Hero Cycles was registered as a large-scale industrial unit. The capital was partly financed by the Government of Punjab.
In 1961 Rockman Cycles Industries was established to manufacture bicycle chains and hubs. Under his leadership Hero Cycles was the first company to export bicycles in large scale. In 1975 they had earned the distinction of Largest bicycle manufactures in India. By 1986 Hero Cycles Limited entered the Guinness Book of Records as the largest manufacturers of bicycles in the world.
Before entering into a joint venture with Honda Motors, Dr. Munjal started the Majestic Auto Limited and started manufacturing Hero Majestic Moped. To manufacture motor cycles in 1984 the Hero Group started a joint venture with Hero Honda and established a plant at Dharuhera Haryana. Hero Group expanded so big that by 2002 they had sold 8.6 million Bikes producing 16000 motorcycles a day.
The Legacy continued with the industry named Hero MotoCorp Ltd. After Hero Honda Motors Ltd. joint venture (A joint venture of Hero with Japanese motors industry Honda) broke up in Aug 2011 after all the settlements were done in board of directors meeting to pay some royalty to Honda Motors Ltd.(Japan) as their Honda was used in Hero Honda on bikes till 2013. The name Hero Honda was used till 2013 by the industry as it had gain so much popularity with that name in South Asia Pacific Region that in India it had become a brand name being the biggest consumer of their bikes and it would be very difficult for them to establish industry Hero MotoCorp Ltd. with same demand and prestige in market after nurturing it as Hero Honda for almost three decades (1983–2011).
The separation gave an opportunity for Hero to expand its market globally with the name Hero MotoCorp Ltd. Previously, it was not permitted for Hero Honda to sell their bikes outside Asia Pacific Region and in countries where Honda group used to do so due to some other internal reasons of the industry.
In Starting week of August 2013 the industry recorded a benchmark never before reached by an Indian Two wheeler Automobile industry manufacturer by producing 50 million bikes.
Brijmohan was married to Santosh and had four children – Late Mr.Raman Kant, Mr. Suman Kant, Mr, Pawan Kant and Mr. Sunil Kant.
Awarded Businessman of the Year in 1994 by business magazine “Business India”
Received the National Award for outstanding contribution to the Development of Indian Small Scale Industry in 1995.
In 1999 Featured in Most Admired CEO List of the magazine “Business Barons”.
Received The Distinguished Entrepreneurship Award from The PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry in 1997.
Xavier Labour Relations Institute (XLRI), Conferred Sir Jehangir Ghandy Medal for Industrial Peace in 2000.
Featured as Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the year in 2001.
Received The Lifetime Achievement award for “Management” from All India Management Association in 2003.
Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi conferred him with a Doctorate; degree of “Doctors of letters” Honoris Causa in October 2004.
Awarded “Padma Bhushan”in March 2005 for his contribution to Trade and Industry in 2005.
Lifetime Achievement Award by TERI in 2011 (02/02/11).
Lifetime Achievement Award by Ernst & Young in 2011 (07/02/11).
Lifetime Contribution Award by All India Management Association in 2011 (20/04/11).
Doctor of Science (Honoris Causa) by IIT, Kharagpur in 2011 (22/08/11).
Lifetime Achievement for the Asia Pacific Entrepreneurship in 2011 (11/11/11).
Awards by Enterprise Asia in 2011.