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BW Businessworld

Building Trust & Transparency

His belief in communicating, engaging, demonstrating and doing ‘more’ is what makes him a great leader

Dedicated to Mahindra Group’s vision to figure amongst the 50 most admirable brands in the world by 2021, V. S. Parthasarathy (fondly known as Partha) is charting out robust expansion plans. Under his stewardship, owing to the inorganic growth route the company undertook in the last few years,  Mahindra has become a multi-billion-dollar corporation. Partha has led many value-accretive acquisitions, which today contribute significantly to Mahindra’s multi-billion-dollar revenue. A global leader and a visionary, Partha has significantly contributed to M&M’s long-term sustained progress, by spearheading many initiatives such as innovation, corporate governance, digitisation and globalisation to name a few.

“I believe that value creation is a reflection of both past and future potential of a business. It is a true measure of a leader’s contribution to society in general and the business in particular. Business performance is depicted in the returns, and the potential of a business gets factored in the share price of the company. However, even before the numbers, the most important part of stakeholder value creation is ‘engagement’ and ‘communication’ that the business has with its stakeholders. This helps build transparency and trust, which then forms the basis for businesses to grow and prosper. A true leader communicates, engages, demonstrates and does ‘much more’. So I just not enhance the value of M&M and its allied businesses but effectively engage with the stakeholders and help them derive value from their businesses. This is a dynamic and continuous process which will keep us looking for higher paradigms,” says Partha.

Apart from being the Group CFO & Group CIO of Mahindra and Mahindra, Partha is also a member of the group’s supervisory board called ‘Group Executive Board’; chairman of Mahindra eMarket; on the board of four listed companies and seven other M&M Group companies. He is also chairman of FICCI CFO Council & Association of Finance Profession of India and an active member of BCCI (Bombay Chamber of Commerce & Industry) Managing Committee.

Partha holds a bachelor’s degree in commerce and is a fellow member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. He also has a degree in Advanced Management Program from Harvard, batch of 2011. He started his career with Modi Xerox as a management trainee and eventually became an associate director before joining M&M in 2000. His journey at M&M began with a stint in HR where he brought about organisational transformation through policy deployment, building performance management system, strategic planning; eventually he went on to win the Deming Prize & Japan Quality Medal. Later he spearheaded functions such as finance, mergers and acquisitions (M&A), IT and international operations, before he was appointed as the CFO of M&M in 2013.

So far Partha, who has worked in various capacities including as the head of M&A & Group CFO at Mahindra, has been successful in completing over 118 M&As and investment banking transactions across all the 11 sectors of its Group and amounting to over $5 billion across geographies such as the US, the UK, Italy, Germany, Korea, China, Australia, Turkey, Brazil, Finland etc. It may not be appropriate to single out a “particular” deal as all these transactions are close to his heart. 

Partha sowed the seeds of globalisation way back in early 21st century when he was appointed as the CEO of international operations at M&M. He was instrumental in chalking out a detailed globalisation strategy for the Farm Equipment Sector (FES) with a vision of 1,500 to 50,000 tractors. Mahindra USA subsequently transcended from 1,000 to 10,000 tractors per annum thereby helping FES to become a global MNC. Today, Mahindra USA with a turnover of over $600 million is on its course to be a billion-dollar company.




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