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HigHligHtS FROm tHe

glTE rOundTABlE

Closing the skills gap: A CEO-lEd pArTnErshIp TO rEInVEnT grOwTh 5 FEbruarY 2014 MuMbai

roUnDtaBle hosts glte partners the ikea Foundation, masterCard and Xyntéo collaborated to host the roundtable.

The IKEA Foundation aims to improve opportunities for children and youth in the world’s poorest communities by funding holistic, long-term programmes that can create substantial, lasting change. The Foundation works with strong strategic partners applying innovative approaches to achieve large-scale results in four fundamental areas of a child’s life: a place to call home; a healthy start in life; a quality education; and sustainable family income. Currently-funded programmes benefit an estimated 100 million children by 2015.

MasterCard (NYSE: MA) is a technology company in the global payments industry. It operates the world’s fastest payments processing network, connecting consumers, financial institutions, merchants, governments and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. MasterCard’s products and solutions make everyday commerce activities – such as shopping, travelling, running a business and managing finances – easier, more secure and more efficient for everyone. Follow MasterCard on Twitter @MasterCardNews, join the discussion on the Cashless Pioneers Blog and subscribe for the latest news on the Engagement Bureau.


Xyntéo’s mission is to ‘reinvent growth’. As an advisory firm, it works with global companies to identify and carry out projects that aim to enable businesses to grow in a new way, fit for the resource, climate and demographic realities of the 21st century. The founder and engine of the GLTE partnership, Xyntéo is also the driving force behind The Performance Theatre. The theatre is an annual meeting for CEOs and chairmen that aims to inspire the leadership needed to build a new kind of growth, capable of creating longer-term value for both shareholders and society as a whole.

Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership “Education is the most powerful weapon that you can use to change the world,” the remarkable leader Nelson Mandela famously said. These are inspiring words for business leaders in the GLTE partnership as we work towards our mission of reinventing the world’s growth model, making growth fit for the resource and demographic realities of the future. For, as Mandela’s words suggest, we cannot hope to overcome these 21st century challenges without starting at the very foundation for growth and human advancement – education. The debate surrounding education for future growth is particularly relevant in India, where leaders have drawn attention to the stark reality of slowed growth combined with a growing ‘skills gap’ in the country. This skills gap spans a broad spectrum of challenges across the entire country, from a lack of basic literacy in rural areas to a shortage of professionals with adequate communications or management skills in the corporate sector. Currently, many young Indians just don’t have access to education, or the training they do receive is of poor quality and does not prepare them for the modern business world. Both government and business are now calling for the education and skills prospects of millions of young people to be improved in order to improve the quality and pace of India’s growth.

In recognition of this problem, GLTE partners the IKEA Foundation, MasterCard and Xyntéo have collaborated to scope and develop projects that can help close the skills gap in India. The aim of the collaboration is to use businesses’ financial and human resources to widen the reach of education projects and increase their impact. I am very excited to be working with the IKEA Foundation and MasterCard for this new collaboration. Under Per Heggenes and Ajay Banga’s leadership, the partnership is set to launch an excellent series of projects that will support India in building future-fit growth. ●

RIGHT: Osvald Bjelland, chairman and CEO, Xyntéo; and founder of the GLTE partnership.


setting the ConteXt

“We believe in the importance of education in driving growth.”

“When it comes to growth, nothing is more important than looking at the fundamentals that underpin it.” ashish Bhatt, managing director, Xyntéo

per Heggenes, Ceo, ikea Foundation

“The skills deficit and the discussion around it needs to come up as an agenda item far higher than it does today. Providing vocational training in the fundamental services that a growth economy needs will directly benefit people not only by helping them improve their business performance, but also in achieving their goal of supporting their families and communities.” ari Sarker, division president for south asia, masterCard


sUmmarY “We need the best and brightest minds to tackle the business and societal challenges we face – the energy crunch and all the other problems we face in our businesses. We need skills to grow our business and our country, and we are ignoring a large part of our skill pool. Why?” dr Yasmine Hilton, chairman, shell india

“How does India scale up, and with what speed do we scale up? Because you cannot say today that the vast majority will live the way they do today, and it will take 25 years to deal with that problem. You have to deal with it in the next five years.” nasser munjee, chairman, Development Credit Bank

GltE paRtnERs the IKEA Foundation, MasterCard and Xyntéo have launched a new collaboration to address the urgent need for skills development to fuel India’s growth. As part of this collaboration, the three partners hosted a roundtable in Mumbai in early February 2014 to meet with leaders from Indian society – from business leaders to academics – and to explore project opportunities with them. The roundtable marked the end of phase one of the collaboration, which focused on research and development of potential projects, and a move into phase two, where partners will begin project work. The discussion centred around opportunities under the three core workstreams – the role of women; entrepreneurship and innovation; and the role of technology. The IKEA Foundation steered the theme of enhancing the role of women, emphasising the immense but poorly cultivated potential of India’s female population, particularly at the base of the pyramid. MasterCard led on the topic of entrepreneurship and innovation, asserting that business skills are crucial to job creation, but banking and financial services must first become more available in rural and underserved areas. Lastly, technology companies including Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) represented the theme of leveraging technology to revolutionise skills development. In total, six projects were identified and discussed in detail – some located under the main workstreams, others crossing over all three workstreams (we’ve outlined these project opportunities in Next steps on page 14.) From the discussion, it became clear that projects that cut across all three workstreams could provide a great opportunity for businesses, given their potential for large-scale impact. Fuelling the discussion was a commitment to, in the words of the IKEA Foundation’s CEO Per Heggenes, “the enormous power of partnership” – a defining feature of GLTE. Thought leaders, education experts, social entrepreneurs and government advisors all contributed to the day’s discussions and affirmed the crucial role of collaborative work in taking talk into action. This report brings together highlights from the roundtable, including summaries of the most pressing challenges for growth in India, grouped around the three workstreams. Most importantly, the report spotlights opportunities for direct action for GLTE partners and their networks. It calls for leaders to tackle the skills issue head on and to rebuild the links between education, training and job growth, in a bid to equip businesses with the means to reinvent growth in India. ●


programme Below is an outline of the programme, including speakers and moderators – you can read their biographies at the back of this report. 09.00 – 09.10  Opening and welcome to THE ROUNDTABLE

Per Heggenes, CEO, IKEA Foundation

09.10 – 09.40

Setting the context

In this session, our speakers put India’s skills deficit into context and explained why this has become one of the greatest threats to the country’s growth prospects. Speakers:  Dr Yasmine Hilton, chairman, Shell India Nasser Munjee, chairman, Development Credit Bank

09.40 – 10.40  Workstream 1: The role of women This session provided an update on the first of our workstreams on the role of women, and we focused our discussion on case studies and opportunities in this area. Chair: Per Heggenes, CEO, IKEA Foundation Moderator: Ashish Bhatt, managing director, Xyntéo Speakers: Gagan Singh, CEO, Business India, and chairperson, Sri Lanka operations, Jones Lang LaSalle  Dr Kiran Datar, former advisor, Knowledge Commission of the Government of India Sven Sandström, CEO, Hand in Hand International 10.40 – 11.00


6 Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth

RIGHT: (top to bottom): Mastercard’s Ari Sarker; Pradeep Singh from the Mohali Campus and Akanksha Hazari from m.Paani; Sven Sandström from Hand in Hand International and Kunal Bhadoo from Kunskapsskolan Eduventures.

RiGHt: (left to right): Dr Joy Deshmukh Ranadive of TCS; DNv GL Energy’s David walker; and kiran Datar, formerly at the Knowledge Commission of India.

11.00 – 12.00

wORkStReam 2: Entrepreneurship and innovation here, we heard updates on our second workstream on entrepreneurship and innovation, and the case studies and opportunities in this area. Chair: Ari Sarker, division president for South Asia, MasterCard Moderator: Ashish Bhatt, managing director, Xyntéo Speakers: Prakash Wakankar, senior advisor, Mahindra Partners Ashish Ahuja, vice president, Customer Sales Group, FINO PayTech Paresh Rajde, founder and chairman, Suvidhaa Infoserve

12.00 – 13.00

wORkStReam 3: the role of technology In an update on our third workstream – the role of technology – we considered the opportunities to use technology as an enabler of skills development. Chair: Geert-Jan van der Zanden, managing director, Xyntéo Moderator: Ashish Bhatt, managing director, Xyntéo Speakers: Aditya Tripathi, CEO and founder, OKS Education, India Akanksha Hazari, founder and CEO, m.Paani Meera Shenoy, national youth skilling expert

13.00 – 13.30

cOnclUding RemaRkS and next StepS

“The real question is: why are we not deploying all the available talent, given that we in business are all looking to hire the brightest and the best for our companies?” dr Yasmine Hilton, chairman, shell india

“Technology has changed so much, but education has not changed at all.” aditya tripathi, Ceo and founder, oks education

per heggenes, CEO, IKEA Foundation ari sarker, division president for south Asia, masterCard


workstream one: thE rOlE OF WOMEn EnHancinG tHE role of women in India’s economy is an ambitious task and, as the session’s speakers pointed out, understanding the root causes of the skills gap and how to narrow it demands an exhaustive look at education, social biases and real and perceived barriers. Yet the need to incorporate more women into the economy has never been greater; particularly when faced with the challenge of creating future-fit growth, the long-term benefits to businesses of including women in the workforce are invaluable. “Fifty percent of the talent pool is women, and if we don’t take advantage of that talent pool we’re making a huge mistake,” said Per Heggenes, CEO of the IKEA Foundation, in his

opening remarks. However, he stressed that treating the issue simply as a numbers game of improving enrolment and recruitment ratios overlooks the underlying complexities. “we have to look very hard at how we’re educating women and making them ready for these different challenges.” while many local projects rely on business solely for financing, businesses’ ability to help these projects scale up could provide a significant opportunity for impact in the skills development space. Gagan Singh, who is CEO of Business India and chairperson for Sri Lanka operations at real estate services company Jones Lang LaSalle, put a spotlight on women in the corporate workspace and the obstacles they face in terms

“We know that if we empower women economically, politically and socially women will use that empowerment, the extra finances, to care for their children. So that’s a direct impact on children’s opportunities.” per Heggenes, Ceo, ikea Foundation


of recruitment, retention and advancement. These include the perceived extra costs of hiring women, biases regarding leadership potential and even women’s internalised notions of their limited value, particularly among ‘first-career women’ whose mothers did not hold jobs and thus lack at-home advice and support. Successfully overcoming these challenges is a business imperative, Ms Singh stressed, since unique value is added “when women sit at the table.” Jones Lang LaSalle is a pioneer in creating a work environment where women can succeed – it holds regular training on sensitisation, leadership and self-esteem and provides maternity leave, childcare and a sense of safety in the workplace.

“Before leadership comes communication skills – we are severely lacking in these skills.” gagan Singh, Ceo, Business india and chairperson, sri lanka operations, Jones lang lasalle

Connecting women’s professional opportunities into a broader continuum between education, skills development and careers, Dr Kiran Datar spoke from her experience as a higher education expert and former advisor to the Knowledge Commission of the Government of India. For women to succeed in the workplace, they must be equipped with not merely vocational skills but have developed analytical skills, management skills and self-confidence, and be “able to negotiate their own environment”.

ABOVE: (top to bottom): Former sheriff of Mumbai, Bakul Patel; m.Paani’s Akanksha Hazari; and Brigadier Rajiv Williams of Jindal Stainless.

Sven Sandström, CEO of Hand in Hand International, widened the discussion further by focusing on women in rural areas, home to 70 per cent of India’s population. Hand in Hand has facilitated transformational skills development in these areas by mentoring women’s self-help groups to invest in vocational training and entrepreneurship. He noted that the labour force participation rate of women in India is a full 30 per cent below the international rate, and in fact that rate has been falling. Yet the benefit of women’s employment is striking – a woman in rural south India increasing her monthly earnings by only 470 rupees (USD $7) adds 1.6 years to her child’s education. The multiplier effect of increased income has a remarkable long-term impact not just for the family, but for society as a whole. ●

(left to right): Sven Sandström; Gagan Singh; Kiran Datar; and Per Heggenes.

The opportunities In this workstream, the opportunities are in the potential for including more women from the bottom of the pyramid, as well as focusing attention on accelerating opportunities within leading companies for women in their workforces. Xyntéo and its project partners are scoping projects that aim to enhance and diversify the resources and training that corporations can offer to promote women’s success. Meanwhile, another project is being designed to upgrade and scale women’s entrepreneurial potential. See Next steps on page 14 for further details about project opportunities.


workstream TWO:

entrepreneurship and innovation Only 35 million people are employed in India’s formal sector, in a population of over 1.2 billion, plus there are a further 600 million people under the age of 25 entering the job market. For continued, quality growth in India, 500 million jobs will need to be created over the next five years. As Ashish Bhatt, Xyntéo managing director, framed the session, “Where are those jobs going to come from if not from innovation and entrepreneurship?” Speakers in the second session addressed how to create the right environment for entrepreneurial activity and risk-taking, which includes providing access to basic financial resources and developing skillsets in all communities to encourage innovation.

FINO PayTech has emerged as another trailblazer in financial inclusion in India, and vice president Ashish Ahuja shared the company’s vision of collaboration to drive a new approach to financial inclusion. FINO PayTech works with a network of 40,000 local agents across 660,000 rural communities to offer financial mentoring, entrepreneurial credit and insurance opportunities. By working with locally recruited representatives, FINO PayTech can adapt skills development to the unique sociolinguistic and economic needs of target communities.

Paresh Rajde, founder of Suvidhaa Infoserve, spoke of the opportunities arising from his entrepreneurial experience. Mr Rajde has launched a pioneering platform for financial inclusion in rural areas by providing a simple web-based access portal for hundreds of financial services. Small business owners in rural communities only need a computer and a broadband connection to provide all these services to customers, in effect serving as banking, bill paying and insurance proxies in the absence of brick-and-mortar institutions. The impact is not merely economic inclusivity, he pointed out, but social inclusion and market participation for these communities as well.

10 Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth

Prakash Wakankar, senior advisor for Mahindra Partners, demonstrated that some of India’s largest businesses can also be important leaders in socially transformative innovation. Mahindra originally launched Mahindra Namaste vocational training schools as a nonprofit initiative but, realising the demand for professional skills development to help make college graduates employable, has scaled the institutes as a for-profit venture. Mr Wakankar’s strongest advice for innovators is to take action. As he put it, “I’d rather have five of

(left to right): Prakash Wakankar of Mahindra Partners; Ashish Ahuja of FINO PayTech; and Paresh Rajde of Suvidhaa Infoserve on the theme of entrepreneurship and innovation.

ABOVE: (top to bottom): Intellecap’s Aparajita Agrawal; DNV GL Energy’s David Walker; and Paresh Rajde of Suvidhaa Infoserve.

“Let’s just go out there and do it. And as we all go out there and do it, I think we’ll start seeing some change.” prakash wakankar, senior advisor, mahindra partners

us going out and four getting it wrong and one getting it right” than to hesitate with caution and self-doubt. Session chair Ari Sarker, division president for South Asia at MasterCard, underscored the importance of skills development in schools like Mahindra Namaste, noting that between 50 and 70 per cent of all Indian university graduates are not employable due to inadequate communication, presentation and professional skills. Innovations at both the grassroots and the corporate level are imperative to connect the links between education, training and overall growth. Summarising the discussion, Xyntéo’s Ashish Bhatt noted that the economic, political and social consequences of not acting to improve conditions for entrepreneurship in India could “make the Arab Spring look like a walk in the park”. ●

“Entrepreneurship and innovation are key levers for growth, especially for a market like India where we have this huge but daunting challenge of lifting hundreds of millions of people from below the poverty line into respectable standards of living.” ari Sarker, division president, south asia, masterCard

thE OppOrtunitiEs The main opportunities around entrepreneurship and innovation will come from focusing on impact and scale. Participants repeatedly pointed out that there was no need for more pilot studies or analysis. The urgent need to build collaborative platforms for financial inclusion and literacy, particularly among the hardest to reach communities in the hardest to reach, ‘underbanked’ areas is where Xyntéo, MasterCard and other project partners will target action. See Next steps on page 14 for further details about project opportunities.


workstream three:

thE rOlE OF tEChnOlOgY iF a suRGEon from a hundred years ago found himself in a modern-day operating room, he would feel utterly unprepared to practise medicine. Yet a teacher from the same time period thrust into today’s classroom might easily walk to the chalkboard and begin a lesson. The contrast, offered by entrepreneur and tech developer Aditya Tripathi – CEO and founder of OKS Education – puts into startling perspective how little contemporary education has taken advantage of evolving technology. Yet the need to reinvent education and skills training in India to meet the demands of a modernising economy has never been greater. Speakers shared insights and case studies of the still under-utilised potential of technology to boost the quality, inclusivity and adaptability of skills development.

Aditya Tripathi argued that the e-learning movement has so far failed to live up to its potential because most online courses are merely platforms for traditional lessons. A recorded lecture holds little value as a remote learning tool if a student cannot engage with the material or lacks the prerequisite base education. Instead, the educational benefit of digital technology lies in its ability to respond to students’ specific needs and learning styles, and to promote learning by doing. “If you drive somewhere yourself, using a map or asking directions, you’ll remember how to get there again.” The same is true for interactive learning that encourages self-discovery – something that tablets and other digital platforms are ideally suited for. At the same time, the scalability of digital learning means it

“Technology can do virtually anything for us as long as we can imagine it. But we need to imagine it.” aditya tripathi, Ceo and founder, oks education


can bring much-needed standardisation to the uneven quality of public education. Meera Shenoy spoke from her own experience of using technology as part of her skills initiatives for youth in rural areas and for workers with disabilities. Technology’s potential for skills development beyond brick-andmortar classrooms can certainly add to the scale of initiatives in rural areas, but it can also boost the transparency of projects and increase the outreach of practitioners and ease of connecting with partners. By leveraging technology in skills development programmes, Ms Shenoy argued, “you can change the language of discourse.” Social enterprise m.Paani is already reinventing remote communities’ access

“A huge portion of the economic divide comes from a knowledge divide.” akanksha Hazari, founder and Ceo, m.paani

Meera Shenoy presents on the panel for the role of technology.

ABOVE: (top to bottom): Xyntéo’s Geert-Jan van der Zanden; Aditya Tripathi of OKS Education; and Kunal Bhadoo from Kunskapsskolan Eduventures.

to financial literacy and livelihood education, capitalising on the ubiquity of mobile phones in rural areas to deliver in-demand skills training over the phone. Founder Akanksha Hazari demonstrated that corporate business interests can go hand in hand with social development – m.Paani offers consumers educational rewards for loyalty to mobile service providers, using the same model as traditional loyalty programmes. The programme offers new brand penetration in growing rural markets while directly providing access to skills in these regions.

In moderating the session, Xyntéo managing director Ashish Bhatt spoke of the need to keep pace with rapid innovation for businesses to remain competitive in a changing world: “The point about technology is that it doesn’t stand still. And if we think the pace of change is fast now, let’s remember that this is probably the slowest it’s ever going to be.” If businesses and organisations can keep up with technology and harness it as a catalyst for learning, the knock-on effect on the quality of their growth and on growth in India as a whole will be phenomenal. ●

The opportunities GLTE partners are moving fast to integrate the latest technology in skills development projects. Opportunities include the research and development of tablet-based education, broadband access to financial services platforms and partnerships with social enterprises to penetrate further into underserved communities. See Next steps on page 14 for further details about project opportunities.


neXt steps Participants from the roundtable are now taking phase two forward, scoping projects under the following titles: sErviCE sECtOr COllabOratiOns BuilDinG a PlatForm For enHanCinG Women’S SKillS in tHe WorKPlaCe anD at Senior manaGement levelS Building an alliance with participant companies, the project would gather corporate best practices and the work of innovative skills initiatives to develop a ‘gold standard’ for fostering success for Indian women in the workplace. It would also demonstrate the business case for how a diverse workforce at all levels can improve business quality and contribute to corporate growth.

FinanCial litEraCY FOr banKing COrrEspOndEnt nEtWOrKs EnHancinG and EXpandinG Financial REsouRcEs in unDerBanKeD CommunitieS The project would aim to provide financial literacy training to members of MasterCard’s banking correspondent network. Enabling them to provide not just the technical platform for financial transactions, they would also serve as financial resources and advisors for their respective communities and expand the scope of their own businesses.


innOvatiOn FOr JOint liabilitY grOups EQuippinG FEmalE EntREpREnEuRs witH tHe SKillS to BooSt innoVation and BRinG Financial inclusion to unDerBanKeD areaS The project’s primary goal would be to help banks expand their networks of proxy correspondents by training rural female entrepreneurs in financial literacy and e-literacy and giving them the tools to launch their own community service businesses.

“This is the start of the next phase. The next phase means everyone has to be involved. We shouldn’t go back to work and sit in our silos.” per Heggenes, Ceo, ikea Foundation

“What can we do as we move forward? The key word here is partnerships.” nasser munjee, chairman, Development Credit Bank

COMbining and sYnErgising businEss and sOCial rEspOnsivEnEss tRansFoRminG womEn’s EmployaBility in communitiEs in VaRious supply cHains In collaboration with financial literacy and vocational institutes, GLTE partners hope to launch pilot skills initiatives aimed at giving women more agency and more career fluidity in communities that make up important supply chains.

vOCatiOnal sKills training CrEdit

EnhanCing thE sustainabilitY OF priMarY prOduCEr COMpaniEs GLTE partners are engaging on a project to reinforce important work helping women’s agricultural producer groups to achieve sustainability by delivering long-term financial development skills and additional soft-skills training.

enSurinG aCCeSS to tHe HiGHeSt-Quality SKillS ProGrammeS FoR womEn at tHE BasE oF tHE pyRamid In order to promote the highest-quality vocational skills institutes, and to give applicants the financial resources to make enrolment viable, the project would offer ‘smart cards’ with limited credit and designate a number of institutes where the credit may be applied.

aBoVE: (top to bottom): Brigadier Rajiv williams of Jindal Stainless; kiran Datar; formerly at the Knowledge Commission of India; and Jayadeva Ranade; member of the National Security Advisory Board for India.

“I really see that there are areas of business partnerships that could very easily emerge, which actually address business objectives. So you drive business while doing good.” ari Sarker, division president for south asia, masterCard


QUotes From the DaY

“We can’t just wait for the government and educational institutions to change. We have to take steps ourselves to help drive that.” per Heggenes, Ceo, ikea Foundation

“I’ve learned that good processes and good facilities aren’t sufficient. They have to be implemented effectively. That requires topdown leadership and strong change management.” Yasmine Hilton, chairman, shell india

“We believe that there is nothing more important in a shrinking, resource-constrained world than to step up to the plate as business leaders and deal with that challenge.” ashish Bhatt, managing director, Xyntéo


“The social enterprise space too often sets slower growth expectations for itself even though they’re private companies. If we’re going to call ourselves the intersection of business and impact, then we need to bring that business aspect and that scale expectation faster.” akanksha Hazari, founder and Ceo, m.paani

“One common thread that links the role of women in all sectors of society is that when you empower a woman through education, you empower an entire generation. Whereas when you educate a man, you educate just an individual.” Bakul patel, former sheriff of mumbai and independent director, iDFC asset management Company

“In the skills space, given that achieving scale is proving to be difficult, we are transferring it to an entrepreneurship issue: forget about employability, can you build entrepreneurs?” aparajita agrawal, director, sankalp Forum, intellecap


Participant biographies Aparajita Agrawal

Director, Sankalp Forum, Intellecap In her current role, Aparajita Agrawal leads Sankalp Forum, a strategic initiative of Intellecap. Sankalp is a global platform that engages with actors from across the globe on enterprise-led development as an approach to attaining inclusive development. It supports high-impact social enterprises and creates opportunities for impact investors, corporations, incubators, angel networks, funders and policymakers to work together to resolve some of the most complex issues facing the developing world. Ms Agrawal has been with Intellecap since 2004 and has 12 years of experience in the development sector, with the majority focused on initiatives to further financial inclusion, social entrepreneurship and impact investing. Prior to Intellecap, Ms Agrawal worked at CARE India. Ms Agrawal holds a management degree from the Indian Institute of Forest Management (IIFM), India.

Ashish Ahuja

Kunal Bhadoo

Vice president, Customer Sales Group, FINO PayTech

CEO, Kunskapsskolan Eduventures India

Ashish Ahuja is the vice president for the Customer Sales Group (CSG) at FINO PayTech Limited. He has been with the organisation since September 2010 and handled various projects and critical assignments. As the head of CSG, he is responsible for executing projects right from customer acquisition, servicing and ensuring effective functioning of entire ground level operations to deliver on mandates accorded by banks, governments and insurance companies. Mr Ahuja and his team played a critical role in establishing FINO PayTech as the market leader and a major player in the national objective of financial inclusion.

Kunal Bhadoo is a member of the board of Kunskapsskolan Eduventures India and was instrumental in bringing Kunskapsskolan (the Swedishbased pioneer in personalised school education) into India in 2012. He has a passion for innovation in education and promotes K-12 (primary and secondary) schools across northern India. He also runs the Navyug Nirman Charitable Trust, which works for the underprivileged in a number of areas.

Prior to FINO PayTech, Mr Ahuja was with ICICI Bank’s Technology Vertical, in various roles across business technology solutions and technology infrastructure management.

18 Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth

Mr Bhadoo is a chartered accountant by training and worked for Price Waterhouse Coopers LLP for over six years in the banking and capital markets audit practice in London.

Ashish Bhatt

Managing director, Xyntéo Ashish Bhatt is a managing director at Xyntéo. He has held senior positions in the public and private

sectors in the UK and in the European Union and has worked closely at senior levels in the United States and India. Prior to joining Xyntéo in 2011, he served as director of an intelligence and geopolitical risk firm; as deputy director of the Ditchley Foundation, a venue for the private discussion of geopolitical issues; as a special advisor to a UK cabinet minister; and as an expert consultant to the EU’s Directorate of Justice and Home Affairs. Mr Bhatt has also served as a director of the United Nations Association of the UK and as a trustee of WaterAid.

Dr Kiran Datar

Former advisor, National Knowledge Commission, Government of India Dr Kiran Datar is actively engaged in many institutions of higher learning as well as schools. Following her retirement she was appointed advisor to the National Knowledge Commission, providing specialist advice on higher education.

Before she retired, she was dean of colleges at the University of Delhi and principal of Miranda House, a constituent college for women at the university. She has been on the board of governors of many of Delhi’s leading schools including Pathways World School, Modern School and Springdales School. Dr Datar has been associated with many educational institutions such as the Foundation for Liberal and Management Education (FLAME), Pune and Sikkim University; and is a member of the board of management for Ambedkar University, Delhi.

Rohan Fernando

Regional managing principal for Asia, ZS Associates Rohan Fernando is the regional managing principal for Asia at ZS Associates, a global sales and marketing consulting firm with a strong footprint in healthcare. Mr Fernando has 18 years of healthcare consulting experience and has collaborated with over 50 pharmaceutical, medical technology and biotech companies in the areas of commercialisation, sales strategy, mergers and integrations and product

launches. His client engagements have spanned over 20 countries and three continents. Mr Fernando began his ZS career in 1996 in the USA. In 2002, he led the team that opened the Milan office and subsequently served as the regional head for Europe between 2007 and 2010.

Akanksha Hazari

Founder and CEO, m.Paani Akanksha Hazari is founder and CEO of m.Paani, an awardwinning social enterprise. m.Paani won the Hult Prize in 2011 and was honoured by former US President Bill Clinton and the Clinton Global Initiative. Prior to founding m.Paani, Ms Hazari was a management consultant. She was a senior energy consultant at Booz & Company, before she then moved to India with TechnoServe to help grow its India programme. Before moving into management consultancy, Ms Hazari was project manager of the Aspen Institute Middle East Strategy Group. She was also a founding partner of Young Professionals in Foreign Policy, an international non-profit, and served on its board of directors.

Most recently, Ms Hazari was named one of the top-ten upcoming female social entrepreneurs in India by The Next Women; one of Action for India’s 2014 top 100 young social innovators; and a Bank of America vital voices fellow.

specialist in Shell Downstream, London. In 1992, after working in a variety of Shell businesses, she became the first female chief information officer (CIO) in Shell when she was appointed to the role for Shell UK, then one of the group’s largest operating companies.

Per Heggenes

She went on to hold a number of senior posts in the group, including senior advisor in the international directorate; general manager for applications development and projects, Shell Downstream; and group global talent manager. She became the CIO responsible for Shell’s information systems in its global retail business, operating in all five continents.

CEO, IKEA Foundation Per Heggenes is CEO of the IKEA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of Stichting INGKA Foundation, which owns the IKEA Group. Before joining IKEA, Mr Heggenes was global head of corporate affairs for the shipping and logistics company Wallenius Wilhelmsen Logistics. He has also acted as UK president, chief executive officer and co-chief executive officer, Europe, for the global public relations firm BursonMarsteller.

Dr Yasmine Hilton

Chairman, Shell India

Dr Yasmine Hilton was appointed chairman of Shell in India in October 2012. Dr Hilton began her career in the Royal Dutch Shell Group in 1979 as a computer trainee

Dr Hilton returned to India in her present assignment as the first female leader in the Indian oil and gas industry. Her focus is on developing talent and creating a strategic road map to deliver the aspirations of the Shell Group in India. In November 2013, Dr Hilton was ranked by Fortune Magazine as the 14th most powerful business woman in India.


Nasser Munjee

Chairman, Development Credit Bank Prior to accepting the chairmanship of DCB, Mr Munjee was managing director of the Infrastructure Development Finance Company (IDFC). Before that, he served the Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC) for over 20 years in various positions including as its executive director. Mr Munjee was one of the first employees of HDFC when it was founded by Mr H T Parekh, thenchairman of ICICI, in 1977 and it was the first housing finance company in India. The HDFC group – on whose Board Mr Munjee continues to be a director – grew to be a financial conglomerate with assets over USD 50 billion in banking, insurance and mutual funds as well as its prime business: housing finance.

Bakul Patel

Former sheriff of Mumbai and independent director, IDFC Asset Management Company Bakul Patel is director of the board of the Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation (IDFC) Asset Management Company. She was

chairperson of the Maharashtra State Financial Corporation and director of the board of the Maharashtra Tourism Development Corporation. She is also a former sheriff of Mumbai and the founder trustee of the Nehru Centre, Mumbai. As a member of the Indian delegation to the UN conference on environment and development in Rio de Janeiro in 1993, Ms Patel was one of the original signatories to the historic UNFCCC. In the past she has been a member of the board of governors of the Tata Institute of Social Sciences (Mumbai), India director of the Population Institute (Washington, US) and a member of the zonal advisory board of the Life Insurance Corporation of India. In October 2006, Ms Patel became the first Indian to receive the Athena International Award, which recognises female leaders for their excellence in professional and social fields.

Paresh Rajde

Founder and chairman, Suvidhaa Infoserve Paresh Rajde is the Founder of Suvidhaa Infoserve, India’s largest and fastest growing S-Commerce® company engaged in digital distribution of customer-centric

20 Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth

services and payments. Mr Rajde founded Suvidhaa in 2007 and became chairman in 2012 and leads Suvidhaa’s innovative and strategic initiatives. Prior to starting Suvidhaa, Mr Rajde founded Forbes Infotainment Limited and as CEO of Forbes Infotainment, Mr Rajde launched the “DhanDhanaDhan” online lottery. A qualified chartered accountant, Mr Rajde began with his own firm in 1991 and later became an advisor to several state governments for online lotteries. Mr Rajde has received several Indian and international awards and was given the “Inclusive Business Leader” Award in 2011 by the International Finance Corporation (IFC).

Srinath Ramamurthy

Head of commercial and legal, Mahindra Partners Srinath Ramamurthy is head of commercial and legal for Mahindra Partners (a division of Mahindra & Mahindra) and supports its portfolio companies on all commercial and contractual issues related to business development, contractual risks and compliance. He also manages the inorganic growth opportunities and equity fund raising transactions for the portfolio and reviews potential

opportunities for new areas of investment. Mr Ramamurthy has worked with Total and Reliance Industries in the oil and gas industry; and Dewey Ballantine and JM Financial in legal and financial services. In his career, he has worked across markets in the UK, US and Africa from an international business development perspective.

Jayadeva Ranade

Member of the National Security Advisory Board, Government of India Jayadeva Ranade is president of the Centre for China Analysis and Strategy and member of the National Security Advisory Board. He has also been appointed a member of the Core Group on China of the Indian Council of World Affairs and is a distinguished fellow with the Institute for Peace and Conflict Studies, New Delhi. He is a security and intelligence expert and a seasoned China analyst with over 25 years’ experience in this field. Mr Ranade is a former additional secretary in the Cabinet Secretariat for the Government of India. His foreign assignments included Hong Kong and Beijing and, prior to retirement in late 2008, he was a minister in the Indian embassy in Washington, DC.

Mr Ranade is the author of ‘China Unveiled: Insights into Chinese Strategic Thinking’, which was published in January 2013. He is often invited by leading TV news channels to comment on issues of national interest and speaks frequently at international conferences and seminars on China and East Asia.

Dr Joy Deshmukh Ranadive

Global head, corporate social responsibility at Tata Consultancy Services

In her current role, Joy Deshmukh Ranadive is responsible for the strategy, policy and deployment of corporate social responsibility at TCS at the global level. She is also responsible for sustainability reporting at the company. Dr Ranadive has held several senior positions in development organisations, including director of the Indian School of Microfinance for Women, Ahmedabad and Country Director of the International Centre for Research on Women, New Delhi. Dr Ranadive holds a doctorate in economics and a Masters in economics from the University of Mumbai.

Sandeep Sabharwal

Programme leader (assistant vice president) at Reliance Foundation Sandeep Sabharwal is programme leader (assistant vice president) at Reliance Foundation, where he leads the Organisation Development team in the field of rural transformation. Prior to taking up this role, he was senior manager at Reliance Life Sciences. From 2001–2006, Mr Sabharwal was a manager at the National Dairy Development Board. Prior to this, he spent six years at Vikas Mitra, working as a programme director leading a team of rural professionals working across 17 villages.

Sven Sandström

CEO, Hand in Hand International Sven Sandström has worked with Hand in Hand International in London since 2009, first as a trustee and then as CEO. The organisation supports job creation programmes in Asia and Africa. Mr Sandström spent 30 years with the World Bank, the last ten as managing director. More recently he has been a director and adviser at

organisations in Europe, the USA, Asia and Africa. For six years he also chaired funding negotiations for the African Development Bank and for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, TB and Malaria. Since 2002, he has been a director of the AES Corporation (USA), a global electric power company. He owns and operates a small hydropower plant in northern Sweden.

Ari Sarker

Division president, South Asia, MasterCard Ari Sarker is division president, South Asia, for MasterCard. In this role he is responsible for providing leadership to the South Asia team, driving core business growth and executing on the nascent but fastrising emerging payments opportunities. Since joining MasterCard in 2010, Mr Sarker has been instrumental in the growth of MasterCard’s network processing under global products and solutions for Asia Pacific, Middle East and Africa. He developed significant engagement across the international markets divisions on various partnership discussions with domestic switches and regulators looking at the possibility of mandating on-soil

switching. In addition, he has played an active role in leading, managing and identifying new equity investment opportunities covering switch acquisitions to acquisition/partnership in other areas of the business including bill payment, pre-paid and transit across the region. Mr Sarker spent over 12 years with General Electric before he joined MasterCard. There he held a variety of senior finance roles covering private equity and corporate lending, spread across the USA, Asia and India. Mr Sarker was with Price Waterhouse Coopers in London in its audit and business advisory group before he moved to General Electric. He is a chartered accountant by training.

Meenakshi Sharma

Vice president, sustainability and corporate communication, SABMiller India Meenakshi Sharma has been with SABMiller India for seven years. She leads the company’s sustainable development initiatives in the areas of watershed development, HIV and responsible drinking. Prior to joining SABMiller India, Ms Sharma worked with leading global communications firms that


represented clients ranging from FMCG, oil and gas and aviation sectors to social organisations and NGOs. She has also led several advocacy and stakeholder engagement projects. Ms Sharma is an active participant in the creation of collaborative, multistakeholder platforms catalysing joint action in the area of water sustainability.

Meera Shenoy

National youth skilling expert Meera Shenoy is a senior advisor at the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) on youth skills and employment; and a skills advisor for the Ministry of Development of North Eastern Region. She supports the office of Mr S Ramadorai in his capacity as chairman of the National Skill Development Authority and advisor to the prime minister on skilling. Ms Shenoy was executive director of India’s first government-led jobs mission for rural and tribal youth, which she helped set up from scratch. When she left after

six years, it had become one of the largest jobs missions for the poor, having trained 280,000 young people and placed 70 per cent of them in jobs ranging from retailing to rural business process outsourcing centres. Until recently Ms Shenoy worked as the World Bank’s specialist in youth and skilling focusing on its poverty alleviation projects in southern Asia. Ms Shenoy founded Youth4Jobs (Y4J), a social enterprise that focuses on helping companies hire an inclusive workforce. Today, it is the largest disability and employment social enterprise in India. Ms Shenoy’s work has won several awards and featured in publications such as the Wall Street Journal and the Harvard Business Review.

Gagan Singh

CEO, Business India, Jones Lang LaSalle; and chairperson of Sri Lanka operations, Jones Lang LaSalle In 2007, Gagan Singh was appointed to oversee the integration of Jones Lang LaSalle Meghraj, which became the largest real estate services firm in India. Between 2008 and 2012 she led the projects and development services (P&DS) business for India, which more than doubled its revenue and margins under her leadership.

22 Closing the skills gap: a CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth

In addition to heading up Jones Lang LaSalle’s Sri Lanka business, which operates as a standalone entity, Ms Singh is also CEO of business for Jones Lang LaSalle India. In this role she oversees strategic consulting, hotels advisory, SEZ shared service operations, and the human resources and legal functions for the firm. Ms Singh also leads the gender diversity and inclusion focus for India. Ms Singh has over 30 years’ experience across the apparel, exports and hospitality sector. Prior to joining Jones Lang LaSalle, Ms Singh was with Benetton India for over six years as executive director and was appointed CEO in 2005. She was chief operating officer at DCM International before joining Benetton India; and has also worked with the Soaltee Group, Nepal as vice president for finance. She began her career with Ranbaxy Laboratories Limited. Ms Singh is a trustee of the Salaam Baalak Trust, an NGO dedicated to working with street and working children. She is also the founding vice president of Youthreach, an NGO.

Pradeep Singh

CEO, Mohali Campus; and deputy dean, Indian School of Business Pradeep Singh has over 35 years’ experience in government, nongovernment and private sector organisations, and in academia. He has recently taken over as CEO of the Mohali campus and deputy dean of the Indian School of Business, an institute established in partnership with The Kellogg School of Management, The Wharton School and London Business School. He is also responsible for operationalising four recentlylaunched institutes at the Indian School of Business, which are dedicated to infrastructure, manufacturing, health care and public policy. Mr Singh has served as vice chairman and CEO of IDFC Projects Limited and was the founding CEO of IL&FS Infrastructure Development Corporation (IIDC). From 1978 to 1995, Mr Singh was a member of the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and later also served as assistant country director at CARE India, an international NGO.

Aditya Tripathi

CEO and founder, OKS Education Aditya Tripathi founded OKS Education just over a year ago and has put together a team and strategy to build a distinctive system to teach Indian students via tablet computers. Mr Tripathi has worked in a number of media companies in print, internet, cable TV and broadcast television, including India Today, Outlook, Hindustan Times and Discovery Networks. He has been involved with the conceptualisation and launch of several newspapers, magazines and TV channels. Aditya founded OKS Education following a period as an external consultant for McKinsey & Co, where he was deeply involved with an eLearning study for a client.

Prakash Wakankar

covering pharmaceuticals, FMCG, packaging, hospitality and energy; and has worked both in India and several ASEAN and far eastern countries over the past 28 years. Mr Wakankar has held several senior positions including president of bottling operations for Coca-Cola India (CBU); president and CEO of Mahindra Holidays; regional director (East Asia and Pacific) for Essel Propack Limited; and managing director of Perfetti van Melle. He is also an accomplished sports broadcaster on both the BBC and Akashwani.

David Walker

CEO, DNV GL Energy David Walker has more than 30 years’ international experience covering the entire energy value chain. In 2013 he was appointed CEO of DNV GL Energy.

Senior advisor, Mahindra Partners Prakash Wakankar is a senior advisor to Mahindra Partners, a division of Mahindra & Mahindra Limited. This division operates like a private equity fund and incubator to new businesses and initiatives for the Mahindra Group. He has diverse industry experience

Prior to this he was CEO of DNV KEMA and, before that, chief strategy officer for the DNV Group. Mr Walker started his career as a geologist for Amoco and later worked for BHP Billiton.

Brigadier Rajiv Williams

Geert-Jan van der Zanden

Corporate head, corporate social responsibility, Jindal Stainless Limited

Managing director, Xyntéo

Brigadier Rajiv Williams, YSM took premature retirement from the Indian Army in 2005 and has since been engaged in corporate social responsibility. He is presently corporate head, corporate social responsibility (CSR) with Jindal Stainless Limited, which is part of the OP Jindal Group and is responsible for planning and executing all Group CSR projects across the country. As a member of the Governing Council of the Global Compact Network, Brig. Williams has championed the initiative: ‘The India CEO Forum on Business and Human Rights’. He is a regular speaker and panelist at various forums and seminars and has been invited as a speaker to the United Nations offices in USA and Geneva.

Geert-Jan van der Zanden became a managing director at Xyntéo in 2013. He joined the company in 2011 to play a leading role in its work with Tata Consultancy Services on water and power. Prior to joining Xyntéo, Mr van der Zanden was managing partner for two strategic consulting firms, specialising in the luxury goods business. He has been author and co-author of various power and water industry studies and is a regular speaker at industry events.

A prolific writer, Brig. Williams has written several articles on varied topics from conflict prevention and security to matters relating to responsible business and corporate citizenship. He has co-authored books on IMA and on Siachen, the latter one titled ‘The Long Road to Siachen the Question Why’, published by Rupa & Co. in 2011.


aBoUt the gloBal leaDership & teChnologY eXChange (glte) THE GLTE partnership connects global businesses engaged in the pursuit of resource-efficient, low-carbon growth. It builds senior executives’ knowledge of how the changing resource picture and climate change are affecting their businesses

and industries, and of how other companies are responding with innovation that embeds resource and carbon efficiency into the core of their businesses. what sets the GLTE partnership apart is its bias for action. The partnership

conceives and conducts projects that aim to enable businesses to grow in a new way, fit for the resource, climate and demographic realities of the 21st century. Advisory firm Xyntéo founded and runs the GLTE partnership.

GltE paRtnERs

project partners

exchange partners

leadership partners.

There are three tiers in the GLTE partnership: project partners, exchange partners and leadership partners.

Follow us on twitter @Xynteo and linkedin to keep up with all the lastest news from Xyntéo and gltE #reinventinggrowth


Closing the skills gap: A CEO-led partnership to reinvent growth in India  

Highlights from the GLTE roundtable in Mumbai, hosted by IKEA Foundation, MasterCard and Xyntéo.

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