Ashok Vaswani to head Kotak Mahindra Bank

Ashok Vaswani to head Kotak Mahindra Bank

Kotak Mahindra Bank said the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has approved the appointment of Ashok Vaswani as the bank’s Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer (MD & CEO) for a period of three years.

Vaswani, who has worked with Barclays in the recent past, will succeed Uday Kotak who quit as MD of the bank effective September 1.

At present, Vaswani is President of Pagaya Technologies Ltd – a US-Israeli AI Fintech. He is also on the Board of the London Stock Exchange Group, the SP Jain Institute of Global Management, UK and supports various philanthropic organisations, including Pratham, and Lend-AHand.

The appointment is subject to shareholders’ approval, Kotak Mahindra Bank said in a statement.

Vaswani has a proven track record spanning three-and-a-half decades, initially at Citigroup and more recently, at Barclays, of building and growing global businesses at scale, nurturing winning teams, establishing transformational partnerships, leveraging forward-leaning technology, with a compelling business vision to deliver strong bottom-line growth, it said.

Interim MD & CEO Kotak Mahindra Bank Dipak Gupta said, “Ashok brings with him values and experience that align with Kotak’s vision to transform into a tech-enabled, customer-centric financial institution for the future.

Founder director of the bank Uday Kotak said Ashok is a word-class leader and banker with digital and customer focus. I am proud that we bring a “Global Indian” home to build Kotak and India of tomorrow.

Kotak was set to retire from his executive role in December. However, it was cut short four months ahead of schedule. His early exit from the country’s fourth-largest bank was cited as a personal reason.

This came as the Reserve Bank of India capped the tenure of a managing director and chief executive officer at 15 years in private sector banks. This is due to the RBI’s norms on leadership appointment which was reviewed after the Yes Bank debacle.

Kotak, whose holding in the bank stands at 26 per cent, has become a non-executive director of the bank.

Commenting on the appointment, Vaswani said, “We will ensure that Kotak Mahindra Bank plays a meaningful role in India’s journey to being one of the top 3 economies in the world in the next 5 years, delivering shareholder value. At a personal level, l am delighted to come back home.”

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