He was earlier the Minister of Railways and Coal (2017-19). He has also held additional charge of Minister of Finance and Corporate Affairs twice in 2018 and 2019. Earlier he was Minister of State (Independent Charge) for Power, Coal, New & Renewable Energy (2014-2017), and Mines (2016-17).
Mr. Goyal’s tenure has seen Indian Railways achieve its best-ever safety record in 2018-19. This was achieved through holistic measures such as elimination of Unmanned Level Crossings (UMLCs) from the broad-gauge network, production of safer coaches, etc. Additionally, Mr. Goyal oversaw the launch of the first indigenous semi-high-speed train Vande Bharat Express between Delhi and Varanasi. The Power, Coal and New & Renewable Energy ministries led transformational changes in India’s power sector including the fast-tracking of electrification of the nearly 18,000 unelectrified villages in some of the remotest and inaccessible parts of the country, the rollout of the most comprehensive power sector reform ever (UDAY), the success of the world’s largest LED bulb distribution programme (UJALA) for energy efficiency, and massive proliferation of renewable energy through the world’s largest renewable energy expansion programme. Other achievements include the elimination of coal shortages to improve the energy security of India and the successful conduct of transparent e-auctions of coal blocks. He also received the 4th Annual Carnot Prize in 2018 recognising the pathbreaking transformations in India’s energy sector.
During his 35 years long political career, Mr. Goyal has held several important positions at different levels in the world’s largest political party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and is in its National Executive. He has been the National Treasurer of the Party. In the 2019 Indian General Elections, he was a member of the Manifesto and Publicity Committees. He also headed the BJP’s Information Communication Campaign Committee for the Indian General Elections 2014. Mr. Goyal has had a brilliant academic record – all-India second rank holder Chartered Accountant and second rank holder in Law in Mumbai University. He was a well-known investment banker and has advised top corporates on management strategy and growth. He also served on the Board of India’s largest commercial bank, the State Bank of India and Bank of Baroda. He was also nominated by the Government of India to the Task Force for Interlinking of Rivers in 2002.
Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra is an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) Officer of 1986 Batch. He assumed the charge of the office of Secretary, Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT) on the 1st of August 2019. He was instrumental in implementing comprehensive reforms in the urban development and power sector in the state of Gujarat. He has held the position of Managing Director in several listed Public Sector Units in India and has shown great acumen in leading the above enterprises towards exceptional development and distinguishable quality. Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra has held the portfolio of Municipal Commissioner in Surat, Gujarat and he was actively involved in the process of converting Surat into one of the models of urban governance with its thrust on Solid Waste Management, quality infrastructure, and sound financial management, which are also essential ingredients of Aviation industry as well. Further, as a Municipal Commissioner of Ahmedabad, he was instrumental in developing several iconic projects such as Sabarmati Riverfront, BRTS, Kankaria Lakefront, and Heritage Promotion, thereby giving an unprecedented boost to Aviation and tourism.
Prior to taking over as Secretary, DPIIT, he served as Chairman of the Airports Authority of India (AAI). He has earlier served as Joint Secretary in the Department of Commerce, Government of India where he pioneered ideas in the fields of, promotion of Special Economic Zones (SEZs), Public Procurement, and Project Exports (Financing & Insurance).Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra’s proactive demeanor brought drastic changes in AAI’s strategic operations. Under the able guidance of Dr. Guruprasad Mohapatra, AAI geared up the activities related to the improvement of airport infrastructure not only at the metro airports but also in tier II and Tier III locations to facilitate easy transportation at those locations.
Shri Anil Agrawal started his career as a software engineer in 1984 writing civil engineering application software. He joined the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1988 and was allotted to the Uttar Pradesh Cadre. He successfully served as the Chief of Police in many criminally, communally, and politically sensitive districts, including Lucknow, Varanasi, and Gorakhpur. He headed the prestigious ‘Special Task Force’ and achieved notable successes against organized crime. Shri Anil Agrawal spearheaded the conceptualization and implementation of ‘UP100’: The world’s largest Police Emergency Response System.
Currently serving as the Joint Secretary to the Government of India at the Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade (DPIIT), his responsibilities include the flagship initiative of the Government of India: ‘Startup India’. He has been instrumental in piloting many regulatory reforms and various initiatives for strengthening the startup and innovation ecosystem in India.
Ms. Shruti Singh, a 2004-batch IAS officer, has completed her Bachelor’s degree in History, followed by Masters in Public Administration. She was Ludhiana’s first woman Municipal Corporation (MC) Commissioner. She was also appointed as the chairman of Ludhiana Improvement Trust in addition to being the MC commissioner and chief administrator of the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA). Born in 1982, Ms. Shruti Singh has served as the Deputy Commissioner in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Jalandhar. Her last posting was as Special Secretary Finance, and Health and Family Welfare, besides Director, Lotteries.
She is currently deputed as Director at Department for Promotion of Industries and Internal Trade, and heads the Startup India Team under the leadership of Joint Secretary, Shri Anil Agrawal. Over the course of her tenure, she has been instrumental in supporting various regulatory reforms and initiatives for strengthening the startup and innovation ecosystem in India.
Padmaja Ruparel is nationally recognized as a key player in the Indian entrepreneurial ecosystem and has helped co-found many of the relevant institutions, besides being an active Angel Investor herself. She has been awarded as one of the 'Top 50 Most Powerful Women in Business' by Fortune India for 2017, 2018, 2019, listed in Forbes India’s WPower Trailblazers and “30 Most Powerful Women in India” by Business Today for 3 years running. The Women Economic Forum recognized her with its “Women of the Decade in Investment Banking” award.
She is Co-Founder & President of Indian Angel Network (IAN), India's first and now possibly one of the world’s largest group of business angels, comprising the who's who of successful entrepreneurs and dynamic CEOs from India and overseas. She built IAN from inception, making it within 15 years a unique institution globally, with close to 500 investors across 10 countries and a portfolio of 160+ companies in 7 countries, spanning 17 sectors. Padmaja has been nominated as Co-Chair of Global Business Angel Network (GBAN). She is a member of the National Expert Advisory Committee on Innovation, Incubation and Technology Entrepreneurship. She is a member of several committees of BIRAC (Dept. of Biotech, Govt. of India), various committees of Ministry of Finance, DPIIT, & SEBI.Apart from cofounding IAN, she also set up and operationalised the Delhi chapter of The Indus Entrepreneurs (TIE) the world’s largest organization focused on entrepreneurship with over 16,000 members across more than 60 chapters across 14 countries. She played a key role as Executive Director in building the Indian Venture Capital Association, India's oldest and largest association of VC and PE firms. Currently, she is a member of IVCA’s Limited Partners Council.
Mr. Senapathy Kris Gopalakrishnan is the Chairman of Axilor Ventures, an accelerator that helps start-ups during the early stage of their business journey. Kris served as the Vice Chairman of Infosys from 2011 to 2014 and the Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director of Infosys from 2007 to 2011. Kris is one of the co-founders of Infosys. Recognized as a global business and technology thought leader, he was voted the top CEO (IT Services category) in Institutional Investor's inaugural ranking of Asia's Top Executives and selected as one of the winners of the second Asian Corporate Director Recognition Awards by Corporate Governance Asia in 2011. He also was selected to Thinkers 50, an elite list of global business thinkers, in 2009. He was elected president of India's apex industry chamber Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) for 2013-14 and served as one of the co-chairs of the World Economic Forum in Davos in January 2014.
In January 2011, the Government of India awarded Mr. Gopalakrishnan the Padma Bhushan, the country’s third-highest civilian honor. Mr. Gopalakrishnan serves on the Board of Governors of Okinawa Institute of Science and Technology (OIST) and is the Chairman, Board of Governors of IIIT, Bangalore. He is the Chairman of the Vision Group on Information Technology of Karnataka Government and the Chairman of CII Start-up Council. He has been appointed as the first chairperson of the Reserve Bank Innovation Hub.
Manoj Kohli is the Country Head – SoftBank India, SoftBank Group International and is supporting over 20 portfolio companies of SoftBank Group and SoftBank Vision Fund such as OLA, OYO, Paytm, Lenskart, Grofers, Snapdeal, WeWork, Delhivery, InMobi, Unacademy, Uber etc in India. He is responsible for addressing government, regulatory and public policy issues which help these companies to achieve their full business potential. Previously Manoj was also the CEO and Managing Director of Bharti Airtel and his key contribution being building Airtel as no 3 telco in the world from 2m to over 400m customers. He led Bharti Airtel’s India operations for 100x scale-up before moving to International responsibility for 20 countries and was also responsible for leading the Africa operations which Bharti Airtel acquired in June 2010.
Manoj Kohli is the Country Head – SoftBank India, SoftBank Group International and is supporting over 20 portfolio companies of SoftBank Group and SoftBank Vision Fund such as OLA, OYO, Paytm, Lenskart, Grofers, Snapdeal, WeWork, Delhivery, InMobi, Unacademy, Uber etc in India. He is responsible for addressing government, regulatory and public policy issues which help these companies to achieve their full business potential. Previously Manoj was also the CEO and Managing Director of Bharti Airtel and his key contribution being building Airtel as no 3 telco in the world from 2m to over 400m customers. He led Bharti Airtel’s India operations for 100x scale-up before moving to International responsibility for 20 countries and was also responsible for leading the Africa operations which Bharti Airtel acquired in June 2010.
Dr. Ajai Chowdhry, one of the six founder members of HCL began an exciting journey more than four decades ago with a dream to give India its very own microcomputer. The sheer clarity of vision and hard work led to a revolution and laid the foundation for the Indian IT industry, taking India to the league of major economies of the world.HCL, India’s original IT garage start-up founded in 1976, today is an Rs 72,000 crores (US $9.9 bn) global enterprise and Dr. Ajai Chowdhry has been a key force in driving the growth of HCL. He led the foundation of HCL's overseas operations, starting with Singapore in 1980s and later expanded to the other South Asian Markets. Dr. Chowdhry, son of an IAS officer, was also a key force in driving the growth of HCL Infosystems, the flagship company of the group. He took over the reins of HCL Infosystems in early 90s and became the Chairman of the company in 1999.
Dr. Ajai Chowdhry has constantly been driving a vision of “IT for the masses” and has been on several Government committees working towards taking PC and broadband into every village in India. He is the Chairman of the Electronics Sector Skills Council and Chairman - FICCI Start up Committee. Dr. Chowdhry is also currently the Co-Chairman of the Working Group for Development of Innovation and IP in the ESDM sector.In 2011, the Hon’ble President of India conferred Dr. Ajai Chowdhry with the prestigious Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian honours, as recognition of his consistent contribution in building the IT industry of the nation.Gifted with a pedant sense of entrepreneurship, Dr. Ajai Chowdhry has been enlisted among ‘India's Most Powerful Brand Builders’ and has been adjudged among ‘India Inc’s Most Powerful CEOs’ by The Economic Times.Presently, Dr. Chowdhry is focusing on incubating entrepreneurship by aiding start-ups. He is also on the Board of Indian Angel Network and has invested in many startups. He is also on the Investment Committee of the IAN Fund and the EDF Fund. He mentors many start-ups.
Vijay is the Chairman and CEO of One97 Communications and its consumer brand Paytm. Hehas played a critical role in developing the mobile payments and commerce ecosystem in India.His goal is to build India’s biggest payments, commerce and financial services conglomerate andthe country’s first $100-billion company.A strong believer in emerging technologies, Vijay founded Paytm in August 2010 and continuesto oversee the company's key strategic efforts including engineering, design, and marketing. Hehas also launched the Paytm Payments Bank and brought a new business model to the world ofbanking.
Vijay has featured in Time Magazine’s ‘100 Most Influential People’ 2017 List. He has alsoearned several other top industry honors like GQ Man of the Year and Entrepreneur of the Yearat ET Awards for Corporate Excellence. He has a bachelor's degree in Electronics andCommunications from the Delhi College of Engineering.
Saurabh Srivastava is one of India’s leading entrepreneurs, investors and institution builders, widely acknowledged as one of the architects of the Indian IT Industry and as leading the creation of a vibrant entrepreneurial eco system in India. He has worked extensively in the US, UK, Singapore and India. The Indian Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi has presented him an Award for contribution to the Indian IT Industry and the President of India has awarded him the Padma Shri, one of India’s highest civilian honours.
He is a co-founder and former Chairman of NASSCOM (the Indian IT Industry Association). After a successful stint in the US and India with IBM and Unisys, he founded several successful IT companies. He is also a cofounder and Former Chairman of NASSCOM Foundation, the IT Industry’s social service arm. He has co-founded and chaired key institutions of modern India focussed on IT and entrepreneurship: Indian Venture Capital Association; TiE NCR (the world’s largest organization focussed on entrepreneurship with 15,000 members across 14 countries); Indian Angel Network ,now the world’s largest angel investor group with over 100 portfolio companies, 475+ investor members globally and operations in 8 locations, including London). He has been involved in investing in around 100 start-ups and has personally mentored hundreds of entrepreneurs.He created India’s first and highly successful private sector VC Fund, Infinity which created several marquee companies such as India Bulls, India Games and Avendus.
Deep is the Founder & Group Executive Chairman of India's leading online travel company, MakeMyTrip Limited. He has steered MakeMyTrip as CEO since its inception in 2000, to a successful listing on NASDAQ in August 2010.Deep is the co-chair of CII National Committee on Tourism and Hospitality and is a member of NASSCOM’s Internet Council. In addition, he is a member of National Startup Advisory Council, a government appointed body that advises the centre on measures needed to build a strong ecosystem to nurture innovation and start-ups in India.
Deep is passionate about Sustainable Tourism and has been championing this cause through MakeMyTrip Foundation. Deep is also one of the founding members of Ashoka University and serves on their governing body and Board. A believer in citizens effort, he is a founding member of ‘I am Gurgaon’—an NGO focused on improving the quality of life in Gurgaon.He holds an MBA degree from IIM, Ahmedabad and a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi.
Prof. Jhunjhunwala is considered a pioneer in nurturing Industry-Academia interaction in India towards R&D, Innovation and Product Development. He conceived and built India’s first university affiliated business park (IIT Madras Research Park). He has been developing products for masses; affordable yet technically advanced products in India, like Wireless in Local Loop, Remote health monitoring system, ATM, Solar-DC to homes, Affordable electric vehicles, etc. TIE conferred him the title of Dronacharya for his contributions to the cause of entrepreneurship, as he incubated and nurtured more than 200 companies at IIT Madras. He heads the IITM Incubation Cell and Rural Technology and Business Incubator (RTBI). He leads the TeNeT group, which has worked closely with industry to create innovative affordable products in sectors like telecom, banking, renewable energy, and electric vehicles. Dr. Jhunjhunwala has made numerous technology contributions, which impacted the lives of people in India over the last twenty-five years.
Dr. Jhunjhunwala has been Chairman and member of various government committees and has been on boards of several education institutions in the country. At the same time, he has been on the boards of a number of public and private companies and has driven comprehensive changes, especially in the area of technology, in these companies. He was a Director on the board of State Bank of India, Bharat Electronics Limited, HTL, NRDC, IDRBT, BIRAC, VSNL and BSNL as well as in Tata Communications, Mahindra Electric, Sasken, Tejas Networks, TTML, Intellect and Exicom. He is currently the Chairman of Technology Advisory Group of Securities Exchange Board of India and Chairperson of the board of Governors of educational institutes like IIIT Kottayam and College of Engineering, Trivandrum, Kerala.
Over a career spanning 37 years, Mohandas Pai has served in the areas of finance, accounting,information technology, human resources, education, corporate governance, social impactinnovation, environmental conservation, policy formulation, heritage preservation, philanthropy,and the venture and startup ecosystem.
Mohan is currently the Chairman of Aarin Capital, Chairman of Manipal Global Education, Memberof the Boards of Havells India and the Institute of Public Enterprises, Member of the Board ofGovernors of the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF), Governing Council Memberof the Centre for Advanced Financial Research and Learning (CAFRAL) promoted by the ReserveBank of India (RBI), Chairman of the Regulatory and Financial Technology Committee of theSecurities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI), Chairman of the SEBI Primary Markets AdvisoryCommittee (PMAC), and Investment Committee Member of 3one4 Capital.He was awarded the Padma Shri by the President of India in 2015 and the KarnatakaRajyotsava Award in 2008.Mohan was previously a Board Member and the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) of Infosys over aspan of 17 years.
Gururaj “Desh” Deshpande is a Trustee of Deshpande Foundation along with his wife Jaishree. Desh is the President and Chairman of Sparta Group LLC, a family investment office. Dr. Deshpande has pursued an entrepreneurial career for the last three decades. He was involved either as the founder, a founding investor or chairman of several companies including Cascade Communications, Sycamore Networks, Coral Networks, Tejas Networks, Cimaron, Webdialogs, Airvana, Sandstone Capital, A123 Systems and Curata.
Dr. Deshpande lives in Boston and serves as a life-member of the MIT Corporation, and his support has made possible MIT's Deshpande Center for Technological Innovation. The Deshpande Foundation strengthens ecosystems that create significant social and economic impact through entrepreneurship and innovation. Leveraging the experience gained at the MIT Center, the Deshpande Foundation has facilitated the setup of five other centers; Deshpande Center for Social Entrepreneurship in India, Entrepreneurship for ALL (EforALL), the Pond-Deshpande Center at the University of New Brunswick in Canada, the Dunin Deshpande Queens Innovation Center at Queens University in Kingston, Ontario and the Gopalakrishnan Deshpande Center for Innovation and Entrepreneurship at the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras, India. Deshpande Foundation also provided the founding grant for MassChallenge in Boston, National Science Foundation Innovation Corps (I-Corps™) and Public Health Foundation of India (PHFI).Deshpande co-chaired the National Council to support President Obama's innovation and entrepreneurship strategy from 2010 to 2015.
Vaibhav Gupta is a Co-founder of Udaan. He founded Udaan in 2016 along with Amod Malviya and Sujeet Kumar, who were both former senior executives at Flipkart.
Prior to founding Udaan, Vaibhav held several leadership roles over a 5-year period at Flipkart. Most notably, he built and scaled Flipkart’s Business Finance & Analytics function.Prior to Flipkart, Vaibhav worked with consulting firm McKinsey & Company for three years at the firm’s US offices.
He holds an MBA from the University of Virginia and a BTech in Computer Science and Engineering from IITDelhi.
Vineet Rai is the Founder of Aavishkaar group and chairs its Group Executive Council. Aavishkaar Group is an Impact Investment Platform impacting millions of people in Asia and Africa using entrepreneurship-based development approach.Aavishkaar Group today comprises Aavishkaar Capital – the groundbreaking Impact Investment Fund Manager, Arohan – a Microfinance Institution, IntelleGrow – a Venture Debt Company, Tribe3 – a technology-enabled lending platform and IntelleCap – the Global Impact Ecosystem builder. The Group also manages Sankalp - the foremost Global platform for engagement around impact investing.
Vineet has received numerous awards including the Impact Investor of the Year by News Corp for 2016, Porter Prize for Strategic Leadership in Social Space, 2016, CNBC TV 18 Award for being the Catalyst Fund for India 2016, G 20 – SME Innovation in Finance Award 2010 in Seoul South Korea, UNDP-IBLF –ICC World Business Award in 2005 and Lemelson Award for Social Venture Investing. He is an Ashoka Fellow and Honorary Member of XLRI Alumni Association. Vineet was invited by the Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi for consultations on doubling the income of the farmers in September 2017 as part of his Champions of Change program. Vineet also serves as Commissioner at the Business Commission for Sustainable Development, as Senior Advisor to Blended Finance Working Group at OECD and as an Advisor to United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific Science Technology and Innovation Advisory Board. Vineet is also appointed by SEBI on its Working Group for Social Stock Exchange in India.
Ms. Astha Grover heads the Startup India team at Invest India. Ms. Grover is in charge for driving the vision of this Startup initiative to promote sustainable economic growth, help all ecosystem stakeholders and generate large-scale employment opportunities. Her team – Startup India Hub serves as a single point of contact for the entire startup ecosystem and enables exchange of knowledge and provides access to market and funding. Under leadership, the team has worked towards recognizing 41,000+ startups, resolved over 150k queries through a vernacular helpline and created India’s largest virtual incubator with over 4,20,000 users. They have created a pan India facilitation architecture for entrepreneurs, and driven high impact projects to promote favourable policies, simplified regulatory procedures, provided access to funding and global markets, and created infrastructure such as incubators and research parks.
Ms. Grover also works towards the ecosystem activation piece by working with various government departments, Fortune 500 companies and incubators to help pilot initiatives with startups and provide mentorship. She also works towards internationalization of startups in the Asia Pacific, Europe, and the US. With a zest towards research and writing – Ms. Grover has also given key inputs towards the drafting of the new Industrial Policy particularly on the Technology and Innovation thematic group among other policy documents. Ms. Grover comes from a consulting and strategy background, before joining Invest India she has worked with AT Kearney supporting the financial institutions sector across the APAC region and HSBC Bank.
Anita M. George is Executive Vice-President and Deputy Head of CDPQ Global. She fills akey role in developing CDPQ’s activities in its three priority international areas: the United States/Latin America, Europe,and Asia Pacific. She actively participates in positioning CDPQ internationally, as well as developing and executing its globalization strategy. In addition to her role managing the international offices, Ms. George contributes to diversifying the portfolio by taking a holistic view in approaching the various markets. She s its on CDPQ’s Investment-Risk Committee.
Ms. George joined CDPQ in April 2016 as Managing Director, South Asia. She was then appointed as Executive Vice-President, Growth Markets and prior to her current role was Executive Vice- President and Head of Strategic Partnerships, Growth Markets.She has extensive knowledge of several of these markets, in addition to possessing a strong ability to develop and strengthen enduring and quality partnerships.She has a strong track record in managing infrastructure investment portfolios on a global scale. Prior to joining CDPQ, she was Senior Director of the World Bank’s Energy and Extractive Industries Global Practice. She also held the positions of Director, Infrastructure and Natural Resources of the International Finance Corporation, a member of the World Bank Group, and Head of Siemens Financial Services in India. Her various roles have led her to work in several regions of the world, including Europe, Asia, the Middle East, Africa,and Latin America.
Harshal is the CFO for Sequoia Capital (India & SEA), responsible for finance and tax functions. His experience includes transaction structuring, international tax, and regulation.
Prior to this, he was a Partner at PwC India, focusing on Private Equity & Venture Capital Funds and Investee Companies. Over the last 16 years, he has been closely working with leading Private Equity & Venture Capital Funds on their Fund Structures including international tax and regulatory aspects of cross-border investments.Harshal is a Chartered Accountant and has a Bachelors degree in Commerce
Karthik Reddy is the Co-Founder and Managing Partner at Blume Ventures, one of India's leading early-stage venture funds. Blume focuses on seed to Pre-Series A stages of funding and has made over a 100 investments across its 8-year history across multiple funds. Blume is now investing from Fund III starting 2019.At Blume, he has led the majority of the investments, and advises and serves on the boards of some of the leading investments at the firm - Servify, Belong, Zopper, Exotel, Grey Orange Robotics, Unacademy, Healthifyme and Railyatri amongst other emerging stars.Blume has scored significant exits from 2015 through 2018, the most prominent of which are Mettl (to Mercer Consulting), Minjar (to Nutanix), Runnr (to Zomato), Taxiforsure (to Ola), Promptec (to Havells) and Zipdial (to Twitter).
Karthik's stints at American Express, Reuters Instinet and Bennett Coleman (Times Group) have given him a breadth of experience across the US and India in Financial Markets, Technology and Media. He is an alumni of IITRoorkee, IIM Bangalore and The Wharton School at University of Pennsylvania.
Nithin bootstrapped and founded Zerodha in 2010 to overcome the hurdles he faced during his decade-long stint as a trader. Over the last decade, Zerodha has changed the landscape of the Indian broking industry. With 4 million customers and contributing to over 15% of the exchange retail trading volumes, Zerodha is the largest retail brokerage in India today. A tech-first company now, Zerodha offers innovative trading and investing solutions that appeal to a wide audience in a big to reach those sections of society that have stayed away from the capital market so far.
Nithin also started Rainmatter, an R&D fintech incubator and fund that has partnered with some of the best investment-tech startups in India. Rainmatter is focused on creating an ecosystem for spurring innovation in the financial technology industry in India. More recently, Nithin has also set up the Rainmatter Climate Foundation – an Indian climate fund providing funding to startups and grassroots organizations working on solutions to mitigate climate change.
Pramath is a pioneering force in Indian higher education. He is the Founder & Chairman of Harappa Education, which strives to become India’s largest online institution focused on teaching habits and skills critical to workplace success in the 21st century. He is the Founding Dean and a member of the Executive Board of ISB which rapidly became one of the top20 business schools in the world.He is also the Founder & Trustee of the acclaimed Ashoka University, a liberal arts university which launched the popular Young India Fellowship.
Pramath has been instrumental in setting up a wide spectrum of change-based higher education initiatives, including a management program for career-oriented women, an entrepreneurship fellowship for the Himalayan region, and a solution-focused design education for the built environment. He has also been a media entrepreneur, education consultant and management advisor at the 9.9 Group, which he founded, the CEO of the Ananda Bazar Patrika Group, and a Partner at McKinsey & Company.
As part of the leadership team at Sequoia Capital, Rajan is focusing on developing Surge into the world's top scale-up program for startups by acting as an investment advisor and mentor to the programme's founders.Surge aims to engineer rapid early progress for startups, by enabling disproportionate access to capital, talent, network, and decades of company-building knowledge. Rajan's deep understanding of technology, operating expertise, and a track record of growing tech businesses across the region will help Surge's founders scale and build the businesses oftomorrow.
Prior to Sequoia, as the VP of Google India and Southeast Asia, Rajan played a key role in expanding the regions internet ecosystem while accelerating Google's innovation and growth in the region. He is also a prolific angel investor who has backed a large number of successful startups at very early stages. Rajan also led Microsoft and Dell in India, worked for Michael Dell the founder of Dell and was earlier a Partner at McKinsey & Company in Chicago.
Rehan Yar Khan is the Founder & Managing Partner of Orios Venture Partners, one of India's earliest technology VC funds. Orios’ portfolio includes Country Delight, GoMechanic, PharmEasy, Beato and Krishify. Rehan previously led 1st round investments in Unicorns OlaCabs & Druva.
Rehan has been an entrepreneur since 1992 building 3 companies; and was also closely involved in the establishment of Indian Angel Network's Mumbai Chapter. He is an active supporter of entrepreneurship development in India as a TiE Charter and policy development as Co-Chair of IVCA's VC Council.He is the co-author of Make Your Own Luck, a book that encourages people in startups, careers, and life.
Sanjeev Bikhchandani is the Founder of Info Edge India Ltd. - the company that owns Naukri.com, India’s leading job site. It also owns 99acres.com, Jeevansathi.com and Shiksha.com. In addition, it has invested in promising internet start-ups such as Zomato, Policybazaar, Shopkirana, Ustraa, Gramophone, Shipsy, and Printo, among others.In 1997, Info Edge launched Naukri.com and transformed itself into an Internet company. It was the first Internet company to list on Indian stock exchanges. Today Info Edge employs over 4000 people and has a market capitalization of over USD 4 billion.
Sanjeev is active in various industry forums and is a contributor to the entrepreneurship ecosystem. He has served as the President of the Delhi chapter of TiE [The Indus Entrepreneurs]. He has also served as a member of the Global Board of Trustees of TiE. He has been Chair of the Internet Council of NASSCOM. He has also served on the Venture Capital Investment Committee for the SIDBI Fund of Funds for startups. Sanjeev is a member of the Board of the CIIE Initiatives at IIM Ahmedabad.He received the “Ernst and Young – Entrepreneur of the Year” award in 2008 for Business Transformation. Sanjeev also won the Dataquest Pathbreaker Award & the Teacher’s Achievement Award for Business in the same year.He is the recipient of the Lakshmipat Singhania – IIM Lucknow National Leadership Award, as Young Leader in the Business Category for the year 2012. In April 2017, Outlook Magazine selected him as one of India’s fifty greatest CEOs ever. Recently in 2019, he was honoured with the Lifetime Achievement Award in IT given by the Financial Express.In Feb 2020, Ministry of Home Affairs approved Sanjeev’s name for conferment of Padma Shri Award.
Shobana Kamineni is the Executive Vice Chairperson of Apollo Hospitals Enterprise Limited and a member of its founding family. Championing special initiatives for over seven years, Shobana now steers the organization’s emergence as a proponent of integrated digital first healthcare services in India through Apollo 24/7. She heads Apollo Pharmacy, India’s largest pharmacy chain with a pan-India network of over 4000+ stores, 30,000+ employees; it serves more than 5,00,000 customers a day. She was founder and chairperson of Apollo Munich Health Insurance, acknowledged as India’s best specialized Health Insurance company for 9 years, consecutively and now merged with HDFC ERGO. As lead Director of Apollo’s research and innovation activities, and cognizant of the convergence between healthcare, pharmaceutical and biotech industries, and the academia, Shobana championed the creation and incubation of a Biobank – a catalogued library of ethically consented, anonymised bio-samples. The Biobank was recognized as one of the top 10 ideas of the decade in Life Sciences by the Time Magazine.
An active member of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), Shobana’s appointment as its President in 2017-18 created history, as she was the first ever woman to hold the position since its inception in 1895. Since January 2020, Shobana is the Co-Chair of the World Economic Forum’s Health and Healthcare Industry Governors Community. Further, in her capacity as the Co-Chair of the WEF’s Closing the Skills Gap Taskforce in India, she has steered focused action on human capital development and in preparing India’s workforce for the Fourth Industrial Revolution and future of work. The World Economic Forum conferred upon her the award of ‘Businesswomen of the Decade’ in recognition of her work in healthcare and empowerment of women.
Siddarth Pai is the Founding Partner of 3one4 Capital, an early-stage Venture Capital Fund house based in Bangalore with cumulative assets under management of over 200 million dollars and over 60 portfolio companies. Some of the notable investments are Licious, Better Place, YourStory, Tracxn, Darwinbox
He also works extensively on policy for startups & investors. He is an expert policy member of ISPIRT, the Indian Software Product Industry Round Table, a Bangalore based think-tank & member of the regulatory affairs committee of the IVCA and the startup committee at CII amongst others.
Sushma is a Partner at Aavishkaar Capital and brings with her over 18 years of diverse experience in the field of early-stage investing, small business incubation and consulting across sectors. Sushma has worked to identify, manage, and exit large number of companies and has worked closely with several inclusive business entrepreneurs. She has been an active representative on the Boards of several early-growth stage companies. She started off with an entrepreneurial venture in engineering design services and moved on to roles in investments. She was part of the acquisition team at Starwood Capital where she evaluated diverse real estate assets. While at Ashoka- Innovators for the Public, Sushma got to work with social entrepreneurs in the Housing for All initiative. She has worked closely on building collaborative partnerships in market-based solutions for the low-income populations.
Sushma has completed a strategic leadership program at the prestigious Harvard Business School. She is an engineering graduate from RVCE, Bangalore and has an MBA from the Indian School of Business, Hyderabad.Sushma loves solving problems and in her free time mentors startups across diverse fields. She was recognized as “40 UNDER 40” Alternate investment professional in India and as one of the Top 100 Women in Finance-2020 in the “leading” category.
Kasaragod Ullas Kamath is the Joint Managing Director of Jyothy Labs Ltd. He is responsible for business development, new project, M&A, and financial management. He has over 25 years of experience. Mr. Kamath has been a part of the driving force in transforming the company from a proprietary concern to a multi-brand FMCG corporate with key brands like Ujala, Maxo, Exo, Pril, Henko, Margo, Mr. White, Chek, Neem and Maya. Under his leadership, Jyothy Laboratories had a successful IPO offering in the year 2007 and a QIP in 2011. He was also instrumental in the acquisition of Henkel AG’s India operations in 2011 and helped elevate Jyothy Labs Ltd. to a 10 brands FMCG company.
Mr. Kamath has participated in the Advance Management Program at Wharton Business School (2004) and at Harvard Business School (2008). He did his Global Masters in Management from London School of Economics (2014). He won "All India CA Business Achiever Award - SME Category 2008" instituted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. He is also the winner of CNBC Awaz 2018 Best CEO AWARD in FMCG Category.Mr. Kamath is an Independent Director of V-Guard Industries Ltd., Cochin, Chairman of FICCI Karnataka State Council and member of FICCI Start Up Committee, New Delhi.He is the Chairman of VISION GROUP of Government of Karnataka for FMCG manufacturing Cluster.
Dipta Shah is the Founder of 54i, a boutique firm that works with technology-enabled SMEs and ecosystem enablers. Dipta has two decades of international experience in the private and public domains, across a range of advisory, operating and investing roles. He has worked with Fortune 500 companies, government entities, and development finance institutions, helping drive operational excellence and innovation.
Dr. Sangita Reddy is a Global Healthcare Leader, Indian Entrepreneur and Humanitarian. She is an Honorary Consul of Brazil in Hyderabad, Appointed by Govt. of India. She is immediate Past President of the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI).Dr. Sangita Reddy is a member of The World Economic Forum and was an elected Member of the Steering Committee on Health for the Twelfth Five Year Plan (2012-2017) by the Planning Commission, Government of India.She has advocated and influenced policy reform needs and is an acclaimed speaker on global healthcare forums around the world including the World Health Congress. As a member of the Rockefeller working Group, she contributes for development of private sector’s role in global healthcare industry.
A driving force for the eHealth initiatives, it is under her leadership that Apollo Hospitals has received three consecutive HiMSS-Elsevier ICT achievement awards and four hospitals have achieved the HiMSS Level-6 certification. Apollo Hospitals Hyderabad has emerged as Asia’s first Health City. An Entrepreneur Promoting Affordable and Sustainable Healthcare Initiatives - Committed to building a more inclusive healthcare ecosystem in the nation, one of her initiatives has been Apollo Reach, which aims to build a string of secondary care hospitals in rural areas across India. Dr. Sangita Reddy is also Chairman at Apollo Knowledge, an education initiative focused on shaping healthcare human capital for tomorrow. Dr. Sangita Reddy heads Apollo Philanthropy, an umbrella entity encompassing ‘Save a Child’s Heart Initiative’, SAHI, CURE and the Billion Hearts Beating Foundation. She also led the formation of the Total Health Foundation which aims to improve the 'total health' of people by acting on the wider determinants of health as well as providing access to healthcare.Dr. Sangita Reddy is director on 16 companies in India which are spread across Healthcare, Alternate Energy, Real Estate and Software Development.Dr. Sangita Reddy has been a recipient of numerous prestigious awards for business and leadership. In 2019, she was presented with International Woman Entrepreneur from India by International Woman Entrepreneurs Challenge Foundation (IWEC awards) and “Best Female Healthcare Leader “Mediko award from the prestigious Indian Medical Association.
Ajay Sawhney belongs to the Indian Administrative Service. He has handled various assignments in the State of Andhra Pradesh, covering land administration, law and order and quasi-judicial functions, rural development, health & family welfare, communication & information technology, e-governance, and elections.
He led the establishment of the International Institute of Information Technology in Hyderabad and its emergence as one of the premier institutions in computer science education and research in the country. With more than ten years of experience in Information Technology he has steered implementation of several major e-governance and broadband projects. As Principal Secretary to Chief Minister of Andhra Pradesh, he was instrumental in the design and implementation of AP Fibernet Project for universalising Fiber to the Home (FTTH) in the State. In Government of India, he has worked as President and CEO of the National e-Governance Division, which assists the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology in the implementation of the National e-Governance Plan, and as Additional Secretary in the Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas before his current role as Secretary, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology.
Mr. Amitabh Kant is presently CEO of National Institution for Transforming India (NITI). He is a member of the Indian Administrative Service, IAS (Kerala Cadre: 1980 batch). He is the author of Branding India - An Incredible Story. Mr. Kant has been a key driver of the “Make in India”, “Startup India”, “Incredible India” and God’s Own Country” initiatives that positioned India and Kerala State as leading manufacturing and tourism destinations. These campaigns have won several international awards and embraced a host of activities – infrastructure development, product enhancement, private-public partnership and positioning and branding based on extensive market research.
Mr. Kant also conceptualized the “Atithi Devo Bhavah” – “Guest is God” campaign to train taxi drivers, guides, immigration officials and make them stakeholders in the tourism development process. Mr. Amitabh Kant was also the National Project Director of the Rural Tourism Project of UNDP which made a paradigm shift in spreading tourism to Indian villages which had core-competency in handicrafts, handloom, and culture. In his capacity as Secretary (Industries) Govt. of India, Mr. Kant drove the Ease of Doing Business initiative and ranking of States on outcome parameters. He is the Chairman of the Committee to implement Digital Payment in India.
Mr. Kant has been the recipient of Economic Time Policy Change Agent of the Year Award, the Bloomberg TV Personality of the Year Award, the NDTV Administrator of the Year Award and the Distinguished Fellowship of the Institute of Directors. He is the recipient of One Globe Award-2016 for leadership in Transforming Governance for the 21stCentury. He is a Member of the Steering Board of “Shaping the Future of Production Systems” of World Economic Forum. He is also the recipient of Sir Edmund Hillary Fellowship award by the Prime Minister of New Zealand. He is also the recipient of Golden Peacock Award for leadership in Economic Transformation - 2017.
Professor K. VijayRaghavan is the Principal Scientific Adviser to the Government of India, succeeding Dr. R. Chidambaram on April 3, 2018 and the Chairperson of Prime Minister’s Science, Technology & Innovation Advisory Council (PM-STIAC).He was Secretary, Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India from January 28, 2013 to February 2, 2018. The Principal Scientific Adviser works with all arms of the Government, with our States, our citizens, national and international agencies. The goal is that the benefits of science, technology and innovation solutions reach the most needy, for the sustainable development of India and for the well-being of our planet.
VijayRaghavan is also a Distinguished Professor at the National Centre of Biological Sciences (NCBS), Tata Institute of Fundamental Research Bangalore (TIFR) and was the NCBS Director till 2013. He studied Chemical Engineering at the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur, holds a Ph.D. in Molecular Biology from the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, was a Senior Research Fellow at the California Institute of Technology. His research is on nerves and muscles and how complex behavior emerges during animal development. VijayRaghavan is a Fellow of the Indian Science Academies, the Royal Society, the Academy of Medical Sciences (UK) and a Foreign Associate of the US National Academy of Sciences. He was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India in 2013.
Ugyen C. Jamtsho is the founder of “I am an Entrepreneur” – a platform to create awareness and promote entrepreneurship as career path for the unreached youth of Bhutan by working closely with existing Bhutanese entrepreneurs. He represents as a Board Member for NGO - Bhutan Jamchog Thuendrel Foundation. Ugyen is a cohort of Business Acceleration Program of Druk holding Investment. He has a Degree in Business Management (Marketing) from Bangalore University, India.
Sruthi heads Cisco LaunchPad, a corporate techno business accelerator where she orchestrates meaningful outcomes for startups in their scale-up journey. She works with deep tech startup founders on fine tuning their business strategies, co-creating end-to-end digital solutions and opening up joint go-to-market opportunities globally as well as instrumenting follow on funding. Prior to Cisco LaunchPad, she spearheaded Customer Success for Tier-1 Telecom Providers at Starent Networks, a startup that got acquired by Cisco. In addition to degrees in Engineering and Psychology, Sruthi went on to explore the academic realms of Digital Transformation and Entrepreneurial Leadership from UC Berkeley and Stanford University, respectively.
He has over 30 years of industry experience across financial services and the investment management sector. He has held varied responsibilities, which include heading equity research, managing equity portfolios, heading the equities business and Portfolio Management business, and managing alternative assets. He joined Nippon India in June 2010, and since then, he has been instrumental in setting up and managing various alternative asset classes including Real Estate, Public Equity, Credit and Tech VC FOF. He leads a team of investment experts under various asset classes i.e., equities, debt, alternate assets, and listed /unlisted investments. He has also been actively involved in the conceptualization, fundraising activities, and fund management of the industry’s first AIF Fund of Fund in Technology and Venture Capital Space. He is one of the few professionals who have experience across both listed and unlisted space, this gives him unique perspective of any investment. He is also an eminent / keynote speaker at various industry events and panel discussions. Prior to joining Nippon, he has worked with the ICICI Group for more than 22 years.
Ms. Ramnath is the Founder, Managing Director and CEO of Multiples Alternate Asset Management, a private equity manager and advisor to funds of ~ USD 1.6 bn. She has over 30 years of experience in the Indian financial sector across private equity, investment banking and structured finance. For close to three decades in financial services, Renuka successfully built several businesses in the ICICI Group including investment banking, e-commerce, and private equity. As the MD & CEO of ICICI Venture for close to a decade, she led that firm to become one of the largest private equity funds in India.
She is a Board Member of EMPEA, the global industry association for private capital in emerging markets. She is also the Chairperson of the Executive Committee of Indian Venture Capital Association 2020-2022. Renuka has been featured in many prestigious listings, including the Top 25 Most Powerful Women in Business (Business Today, India); India's most Powerful CEO's (Economic Times), the Top 25 Non-Bank Women in Finance (US Banker's global list), Asia's Women in the Mix: The Year's Top 50 for Achievement in Business (Forbes), Top 25 Women in Asian Asset Management (Asian Investor) and most recently has been awarded the AVCJ Special Achievement Award, 2019.
Mr. Menezes is a Partner & COO at ChrysCapital and has been with the firm for over 20 years. He is a member of the advisory committee and is responsible for diligence, regulatory/industry relationships, legal, compliance and operations. Mr. Menezes is a private equity veteran and has served on the board of the Indian Private Equity Association for almost eight years, including as the Vice-Chairman. He has also served as a Member of the CII National Committee of private equity and other industry bodies.
Prior to ChrysCapital, Mr. Menezes was with KPMG, in its information technology and U.S. GAAP practices, where, among other things, he was involved in the ADR issues and NYSE/NASDAQ listings of several leading Indian companies. Mr. Menezes is a rank-holding Chartered Accountant and received a Bachelor’s degree in commerce from Mumbai University.
Professor Jain is an internationally reputed scholar of earthquake engineering and recognized as one of the most dynamic educators in India. He is currently serving his third 5-year term as Director of the Indian Institute of Technology Gandhinagar, which he joined as Founder Director in June 2009. He was on the faculty of IIT Kanpur for 35 years from 1984-2019.
Prof. Jain received a Bachelors degree in civil engineering from the University of Roorkee (now IIT Roorkee) and a Masters and a PhD from the California Institute of Technology. He served as President of the International Association for Earthquake Engineering during 2014 to 2018. He was elected Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering in 2003 and was conferred Padma Shri by the President of India in 2020.
In a diplomatic career spanning over three decades, Ambassador Kapoor has served in different capacities in the Indian Missions in Moscow, Kyiv, London, and Geneva apart from serving in the Ministry of External Affairs and the Prime Minister’s Office in New Delhi. He also served as an international civil servant with the Commonwealth Secretariat in London. He was India’s High Commissioner to Mozambique and the Kingdom of Swaziland from January 2014 to early 2016, and Ambassador to Israel from March 2016 to September 2019. Ambassador Kapoor has an MBA from the Indian Institute of Management in Ahmedabad, India, and a Master’s in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics.
Born on July 28, 1965, Ambassador Sanjay Kumar Verma graduated from Patna University and then pursued a PostGraduate degree in Physics at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT)Delhi. Amb. Sanjay Kumar Verma is an officer of the 1988 batch of Indian Foreign Service (IFS). He was stationed at the Consulate General of India, Hong Kong and at the Embassy of India in China, Vietnam, and Turkey, before serving as the Consul General of India in Milan, Italy. Amb. Verma was also the Indian Ambassador to the Republic of Sudan. Following his tenure in Sudan, Amb. Verma served as Joint Secretary (Global Estate Management) in MEA, New Delhi. Prior to his arrival in Japan as the Ambassador of India, Amb. Verma was posted in MEA, New Delhi as Additional Secretary (Administration) and was also in charge of the Cyber Diplomacy Division. Amb.Verma is deeply passionate about Information Technology, Artificial Intelligence, Cyber Diplomacy, delivery of people-centric services using interactive technologies, guiding, and facilitating small businesses and investors, etc. He reads, writes, and speaks Hindi, English, and Chinese (Mandarin). He has conversational skills in Bengali as well.
Ambassador Sripriya Ranganathan is a career diplomat who joined the Indian Foreign Service in 1994, immediately after obtaining her Masters’ Degree in History, with specialisation in Modern Indian History, from Delhi University. During her career, Ambassador Ranganathan has held a variety of positions in New Delhi and abroad. She served in Myanmar as the second in command at Embassy of India, Yangon. Her other overseas postings were in Ankara and Hong Kong. During her multiple years’ experience in headquarters, she has served in various capacities in the Ministry of External Affairs as well as in the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. She served as Joint Secretary (Director General) responsible for relations with Bangladesh and Myanmar. She has also headed the SAARC Division and the Policy Planning Divisions in the Ministry. Earlier, she served as Director in the Disarmament & International Security Affairs Divisions and as Under Secretary in the Administration and Europe West Divisions. In the course of her secondment to Department of Commerce, she served in the Export Promotion (Agricultural Products) & the Trade Policy Divisions.
Ambassador Ranganathan speaks Tamil, Hindi and English and has some knowledge of Turkish. She is deeply interested in issues relating to women’s leadership and empowerment and tries to make time for activities related to these issues. Her other interests include reading, hiking, travel, yoga, and music.
Shri D. Bala Venkatesh Varma (IFS: 1988), is the Ambassador of India to the Russian Federation. He holds a M.A., M. Phil International Relations (Disarmament Studies). Previously, Dr Venkatesh has served as the Ambassador of Republic of India to the Kingdom of Spain. He is the first recipient of the S.K. Singh Award for Excellence in the Indian Foreign Service, in 2010 for his contribution to the negotiation of the Civil Nuclear Initiative.He has also been a member of the UN GGE on Missiles and the UN GGE on Disarmament and Nuclear Non-Proliferation Education and a Member of the Indian Delegation to the UNGA in 1998, 1999, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2013.
Kunal Bahl is the Co-Founder and CEO of Snapdeal.com - India’s leading, value-focused e-commerce marketplace. In its journey till now, Snapdeal has partnered with several global marquee investors such as Softbank, Alibaba, Foxconn, BlackRock, Temasek, eBay Inc., Sequoia Capital, Intel Capital, Mr. Ratan Tata, Mr. Azim Premji, among others.
Kunal is an engineer from the University of Pennsylvania, with a business degree from The Wharton School. During his long and distinguished journey as an entrepreneur, Kunal has won various awards and accolades, which include:The Economic Times Comeback Award 2019, Joseph Wharton Award for Young Leadership 2018, The Economic Times Entrepreneur of the Year 2015, NDTV Indian of the Year 2015, Fortune Global 40 under 40 list 2014, and EY Entrepreneur of the Year (Startup) 2014. Kunal is passionate about entrepreneurship and has co-founded Titan Capital, which supports entrepreneurs with capital and mentorship. Titan Capital is an early investor in many businesses, including Ola Cabs, Urban Company, Shadowfax, Razorpay, Khatabook, Beardo, Zinier, Mamaearth, Bira, GoMechanic, Yellow Messenger, among others. As an operator-investor, Kunal leverages his experience and network to guide budding entrepreneurs through the formative stages of their business journeys.Kunal is an influential voice on issues pertaining to Indian startups and entrepreneurship and feels strongly about India’s need to have a robust and thriving startup ecosystem.
Nupur Garg is a leading investor in private equity and venture capital and an expert advisor to large institutional investors. She is the founder of WinPE, a not-for-profit initiative to enhance gender diversity in the investing ecosystem. Nupur serves as an independent director on the boards of companies including SIDBI, the Indian Development Finance Institution where she chairs the Board Committee for venture capital funds operations. She is an external expert on the investment committee for the INR 10,000 crore Fund of Fund for Startups for investing in the Indian startup ecosystem; and an independent member of the investment committee at the $1 bn Fund of Funds managed by the National Investment and Infrastructure Fund (NIIF), the quasi-sovereign wealth fund sponsored by the Government of India. She is an advisor to and a member of the investment committee for the Dutch Good Growth Fund (DGGF) investment funds mandate given by the Dutch Government for investments in SMEs in frontier markets across 75 countries. Nupur advises select fund managers on a confidential basis on matters related to institutionalization, best practices, and governance. She also mentors female entrepreneurs across various platforms.
Nupur was listed in the Forbes W-Power list of Self-Made Women in 2020, among India’s top 100 Women Leaders in Finance (AIWMI 2019), awarded the Women Empowerment Entrepreneur Award 2019-20 and the Business Excellence and Innovative Best Practices - Academia Award 2019.
Sudhir is Founder & Chairman of Chiratae Ventures India Advisors. Chiratae Ventures (formerly IDG Ventures India) is a leading VC firm advising AUM of $ 800 M, invested in 100 plus companies, exited 35 plus, has taken 2 companies public, funded 4 unicorns, and backed 11 market leaders. Since 1998 Sudhir and his team have advised on investments into 100+ firms acrossDeep Tech, Digital Consumer, Enterprise Software, Fintech, and Healthcare Sectors.Key investments include Myntra, Flipkart, FirstCry, Lenskart, Policy Bazaar, Curefit,Manthan, Newgen, Nestaway, Agrostar, Emotix, Uniphore and PlaySimple amongstothers. Today Chiratae Ventures is a leading tech VC in India with Mr. Ratan Tata, Mr. Kris Gopalakrishnan, Mr. Bruno Raschle and Mr. Manish Choksi as well as Dr. Ferzaan on its Global Advisory Board and India Advisory Board
In 2001, Sudhir was recognized by Red Herring as one of the leading venture capitalists in the country. He has been named among the Top Ten IT Professionals by Dataquest and by Bloomberg UTV as ‘’Visionary Venture Capitalist” in 2011. Sudhir has been featured in Subroto Bagchi’s book ‘’Zen Garden – Conversations with Pathmakers’’, in 2014.In addition to leading Chiratae Ventures India Advisors, Sudhir has served on EMPEAVenture Capital Council (Emerging Markets Private Equity Association). He has servedas Advisor on the Technology Innovation and Productivity Council of the GMR Group.He also served on the Executive Committee of Indian Venture Capital Association(IVCA), Investment Committee of UTI Ventures, on the Board of Ascent Capital and on the Board of Advisors at N.S. Raghavan Centre for Entrepreneurship, IIM Bangalore.With over 30 years of experience Sudhir has served at various leadership positions atHCL, Wipro and Cyient, as well as Country Head of Walden International India.
Santoshi Rana is the Founder of Bihani Social Venture, Nepal's first social enterprise working in the field of ageing. She is a social entrepreneur who has also been involved as a guest faculty at Kathmandu University School of Arts, teaching 'Caring for Elderly' as part of Bachelor's in Community Development course along with, being a mentor, panelist and speaker in various platforms related to entrepreneurship, social entrepreneurship, youth/ elder and women empowerment.
She also runs a Not-for-Profit social enterprise called Ibasho Nepal, which works in creating socially integrated and sustainable communities that value their elders. She has been part of Nepal’s social enterprise ecosystem for more than 8 years and was integral in organizing the first of its kind “Social Entrepreneurship Award” in Nepal during her tenure at ChangeFusion Nepal - an organization which can be considered the pioneer in the field of driving social entrepreneurship in Nepal.
Choitsho Eudel Dorji is a founder of a recent startup on natural wellness products in Bhutan. Tse Organics manufactures essential oils, oil blends, scrubs, and other wellness products.She has worked over 7 years with the Ministry of Economic Affairs, Royal Government of Bhutan and has worked as a consultant for the UNDP for cottage and small industries development, access to finance and business climate.
Choitsho also represented Bhutan in conferences on competition law, development and sustainable growth. She has a Master’s in Development Studies (Development Economics) from the Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies in Geneva, Switzerland and Bachelor’s in Arts double major in Economics and French from Mount Holyoke College, MA, USA along with training in Multilateral Trade and Commercial Diplomacy from the WTO Training Institute in Geneva, Switzerland.
Kasturi joined Hemas in 2002, where she held many senior management positions, including Chief Process Officer and Managing Director of the Hemas Transportation Sector. In 2016, Kasturi took over as Managing Director of Hemas Pharmaceuticals, Surgicals and Diagnostics, where she was responsible for driving the company’s local and regional expansion. She also functioned as the Managing Director of Hemas Mobility Sector prior to being appointed as Group CEO in October 2020.
Kasturi is a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants and is an alumni of the Senior Executive Leadership Program at Harvard Business School. She serves on the Board of Capital Alliance Limited as a Non-Executive Director, along with several other Hemas subsidiaries in the healthcare and consumer industries. Kasturi is an active member of several industry associations and is currently the first female President of the Sri Lanka Chamber of the Pharmaceutical Industry and serves on the main committee of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce. She was recognized as one of the twelve Top Women Change-Makers in the country in 2019, by the Parliament of Sri Lanka. Kasturi also represented Sri Lanka as a member of the National Netball and Basketball Teams.
William (Bill) Blair is a Vice President in Lockheed Martin and joined Lockheed Martin India Private Limited as Chief Executive on 1 October 2019. In this capacity, he is responsible for leading and developing Lockheed Martin Corporation’s strategy for India and serve as the executive representative for all Lockheed Martin programs, products and services in the country. This is his third appointment in India with a multinational aerospace and defense company.Previously, Mr. Blair was the Vice President of Strategic Solutions and Middle East Executive for Lockheed Martin Space Systems where he was responsible for leading and developing strategic solutions to enterprise-wide challenges and opportunities. He led and developed strategic partnerships to advance space capabilities and services with customers and strategic partners in Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and Israel.
Prior to joining Lockheed Martin in May 2018, Mr. Blair served in a variety of senior roles with defense and aerospace companies. These include the Raytheon company where he was Vice President & Business Development Executive for Air & Missile Defense Systems promoting multi-domain solutions including Standard Missile-3 and Standard Missile-6 programs, BMD Exo-atmospheric Kill Vehicles, and Israeli Cooperative Missile Defense Programs. Prior to this appointment, he served as President of Raytheon International, Asia based in Singapore, and President of Raytheon International, India based in New Delhi. During this time, he led business development teams with offices based in Tokyo, Seoul, Taipei, Singapore, and New Delhi and was responsible for establishing and maintaining strategic relationships with customers, partners and driving profitable growth.
Shri. Alok Shekhar is an IAS Officerfrom the batch of 1994, of the Punjab cadre. He has a diverse professional experience of over 25 years in service of the Government, with progressively higher responsibilities in public administration, public policy, and International Relations. At present, Shri. Alok Shekhar is serving under the Government of Punjab as the Principal Secretary in charge of the Departments of Industries & Commerce, and Investment Promotion. In his previous roles, Mr. Shekhar has served under the Ministry of Civil Aviation as a Representative of India in the Council of International Civil Aviation Organization, Montreal, Canada, Joint Secretary and Director, Ministry of Civil Aviation, and Private Secretary to the Minister of External Affairs, India, along with various other administrative roles under the Government of Punjab.
Dr. E.V. Ramana Reddy is an Indian Administrative Service Officer, batch of 1988. He is one of the senior most bureaucrats in Karnataka and has 30 years of experience across diverse portfolios such as Agriculture, Revenue Administration, Commerce & Industries, Rural Development & Panchayat Raj, Education, Health & Family Welfare, Information Technology & Biotechnology, Space applications, Personnel & General Administration, and Housing.
As the first Director of the Department of IT and Bt, he spearheaded Asia’s biggest trade shows Bangaloreit.com and Bangalore Bio, for three consecutive years, from 2000 to 2003. During his tenure with the Agriculture Department, he was responsible for formulating the Karnataka State Organic Farming Policy, the first such policy in the country. His primary objective in his position as the Additional Chief Secretary for Electronics, IT, Bt and S&T, has been to promote innovation and research in the State by mobilizing startups, academia, and corporates. He is driving strategic initiatives such as Elevate, to provide seed funding to technology start-ups, and “Global Innovation Alliances” for curated technology partnerships with innovation hubs across the world. He also spearheads the flagship event of the State, the Bengaluru Tech Summit. It is an annual technology and innovation summit which has reached global recognition under his leadership. He is also serving as the Additional Chief Secretary to Hon'ble Chief Minister, Karnataka from September 2020.
Shri. Jayesh Ranjan is the Principal Secretary of the Industries & Commerce (I&C) and Information Technology (IT) Department of the Telangana Government. His assignment involves developing policy frameworks, attracting new investments, identifying opportunities for utilizing IT in various government processes, and promoting the digital empowerment of the citizens. His last few assignments have been in the Industrial Promotion sector as Commissioner and MD of the Industries Department, Secretary in the Tourism Promotion Department, and Vice-Chairman of the Hyderabad Urban Development (HUDA), all for 2-3 years each, and various rural assignments in different parts of the state for over 12 years, working in diverse sectors like Tribal Development, Natural Resources Management, Poverty Alleviation, and other related social development sectors.
Ms. Sansanee Huabsomboon has 10 years’ experience of fostering & incubating more than 2,000 new technology entrepreneurs and startups through BIC-NSTDA’s incubation programs. She has served as a judgeon various technology business competitions, startup pitching challenges at both the Domestic and International stage and the Startup Thailand Prime Minister Awards. She also runs cross-incubation program for startups from many countries to Thailand such as Malaysia, Korea, US, Indonesia etc. She also mentors Thai tech startups to expand their businesses internationally in Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan Malaysia, Taiwan, and Vietnam.
She has initiated various open innovation projects with big corporates, and private sector to link up market demands, funds, and partners for startups in specific sectors. Currently, Sansanee is one of key persons to drive significant mechanism to move forward the Thailand Startup ecosystem and Innovation Driven Enterprises (IDE) under Ministry of Higher Education, Science, Research, and Innovation.
Bibhusan is an entrepreneur with a keen interest in developing technological solutions to cater to the need of the development sector. As Co-Founder and CEO of YoungInnovations, he has successfully led the company from a small startup in 2007 to being a prominent name in the IT industry of Nepal as of now. YoungInnovations specialize in global development; it builds partnerships and technologies that help organizations including governments, development partners and the private sector to change the way the world works. YoungInnovations has led various award-winning technology developments and has provided services to various stakeholders in more than 15 countries in various parts of the world.
Bibhusan has a deep interest in nurturing an entrepreneurial mindset among young enthusiasts. He is an active member of the Nepalese entrepreneurial community and is often found delivering lectures, providing mentorship and guidance to budding entrepreneurs. He is also actively engaged in sharing ideas and solutions in the intersection of technology and development in various national and international conferences and events. He is also a visiting faculty in Nepal Administrative Staff College (NASC) and is involved in delivering sessions related to innovation and creativity in the public sector. He is also engaged as part-time faculty in various academic institutions conducting classes on technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship subjects.
Amitabha Bandyopadhyay isthe KENT chair professor for entrepreneurship & innovation of Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur in the Department of Biological Sciences and Bioengineering. Amitabha earned BSc in Chemistry from Presidency College, Calcutta, and MSc in Biochemistry from the Calcutta University. Amitabha Bandyopadhyay conducted his doctoral research in the laboratory of Prof. Umadas Maitra at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York. For his PhD dissertation he studied initiation of protein synthesis in eukaryotes. Upon receiving his PhD, in 2002 he joined the laboratory of Prof. Clifford Tabin at Harvard Medical School for his post-doctoral research. At HMS he studied the role of BMP signaling in limb patterning and bone development.
He joined the faculty of Biological Sciences and Bioengineering of Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (IIT Kanpur) as an assistant professor in 2006. In his independent laboratory he studies the molecular basis of limb patterning, skeletal differentiation, and maintenance. Since July 2018 Amitabha also serves as the Professor-in-charge of Innovation and Incubation and runs the Technology Business Incubator of IIT Kanpur. He is one of the ex-officio Directors of Foundation for Innovation and Research in Science and Technology (F.I.R.S.T.), the section 8 company promoted by IIT Kanpur to oversee Innovation and Incubation activities at IIT Kanpur.
Extremely self-motivated and always working with enthusiasm, taking pride in what he does in his daily roles to deliver a positive result makes Sonam a firm believer in hard work to achieve great results and bring positive reforms to one’s work environment. He is the Founder of the Tigers Nest Camp, Bhutan’s first luxury glamping resort, located at Paro.
He is the current Chairman of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Bhutan. Sonam has a Bachelor’s Degree in Catering Science and Hotel Management from India and is currently enrolled in Cornell University for Certificate in Hospitality Management.
Lahiru Pathmalal is Co–Founder and former CEO of Takas.lk (One of Sri Lanka’s largest e-commerce operations). Lahiru is a current Board Member of the Sri Lankan Angel Network (LAN) and former Board Member of Peoples Bank. He has been nominated and worked in various Government committees. He holds a Bachelor’s from the University of Maryland, Baltimore County (US) and a Masters’ from the University of Queensland (AUS).
Ukrit Visitkitjakarn has over 18 years’ experience in the field of research and development in mobile/smartphone technology with two US patents at Motorola, USA. He has successfully founded three startups, namely, Earthcare Innosys, Bookkaze, and Apptividia. He represented Thailand in Leadership in Innovation Fellowship at Oxford, London. He has been a guest speaker at Startup APEC conference, held at Lima, Peru.
Prajeeth is a serial entrepreneur and has been an active investor in early-stage companies since 2002. In 2009 he set up BOV Capital and since has been instrumental in creating the startup ecosystem in Sri Lanka including launching the Venture Engine program. He was a member of the National Steering Committee on Innovation and Entrepreneurship. He is the Founder of the first angel network in Sri Lanka and Co-Founder of the first Venture Capital fund in Sri Lanka. He is also the Chairman of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce’s startup council and was instrumental in setting this up at the chamber. Prajeeth engages deeply with investee companies in all areas of company from investing, building teams, regional GTM, follow-on fundraising and exits.
Amun Thapa is the Founder & CEO of Sastodeal.com - Nepal's leading local e-commerce company founded in 2011. Sastodeal has been the pioneer in the e-commerce industry in Nepal. Sastodeal is also the exclusive partner of Flipkart for Nepal; a strategic partnership to better facilitate cross-border trade between Nepal and India. The company is in partnership with the Government of Nepal to promote and distribute the products sold by the Nepali government.
Dr.K. Suresh Kumar heads PSG-Science & Technology Entrepreneurial Park (PSG-STEP), the Technology Business Incubator (TBI) associated with PSG College of Technology, Coimbatore, India with the focus to support startups in the areas of information technology, electronics and mechanical. He has been a part of establishing the incubation facility and building its brand to the stakeholders of entrepreneurship in the institute and in the region.
For about two decades, he has been responsible for managing the incubation facility, handholding startups, implementing the innovation fund, managing the seed fund support system, coordinating the outreach centre activities for promoting innovations and identifying and executing the consulting assignments. Dr. Kumar is the President of Indian STEPs and Business Incubators Association (ISBA) and also handles the Secretariat of Asia Pacific Incubation Network (APIN), an initiative supported by infoDev, World Bank & Department of Science & Technology, Government of India.
Narottam is a passionate educator. He has been involved in education for the last two decades and currently he is the President of King’s College, Kathmandu, Nepal.An International Visitor Leadership Program Fellow of US Department of State, Narottam attended an executive program on Social Entrepreneurship at INSEAD, Singapore. He served as the convener of the Startup Ecosystem Development Committee of Ministry of Industry, Government of Nepal for a period of one year in the year 2017. He was also awarded as the Manager of the Year 2013 by Management Association of Nepal.
A firm believer of freedom and actively involved in promoting entrepreneurship, Narottam is in the mission of democratizing the wealth creation in Nepalese society. For the last one decade, Narottam has been a mentor to several startups in Nepal and has been actively involved in developing the entrepreneurship ecosystem in Nepal.
Mano Sekaram is a serial tech entrepreneur and is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of 99x, an award-winning, high-quality digital product engineering company that specializes in delivering digital services to European markets. This company, under his stewardship, has been listed among the top 25 ‘Best Companies to Work For’ in Sri Lanka for eight consecutive years and is ranked among ‘Asia’s Best Workplaces’ for 2020.
He is also the Founder of StartupX Foundry, one of Sri Lanka’s first tech startup accelerators, which aims at taking Sri Lankan startups to the global stage by providing necessary guidance and support. He further influences Sri Lanka’s start-up ecosystem through the Lankan Angel Network (LAN), of which he is Chairman.Mano was appointed to the Board of the Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) of Sri Lanka and is the past Chairman of the IT/BPM sector’s apex body, the Sri Lanka Association of Software and Service Companies (SLASSCOM).
Having worked with government, aboard and in private sector has given him a life changing experience, witnessing a strong need of economic development through innovation and entrepreneurship. Since then, with a deep and constant thinking to value position the youth, Mr. Tashi Wangdi took on the entrepreneurship journey and founded iHub and iTravel. He has worked with CIO Academy Asia based in Singapore and with Bhutan ICT Training Association. He is also the Co-Founder and IT Advisory of Team Happy. He has a Degree in Computer Applications.
Dr. Tshering C. Dorji is the Chief Executive Officer of Thimphu Tech Park Limited, Bhutan’s first IT Park and Bhutan Innovation & Technology Centre. With his deep passion for technology and youth entrepreneurship, he has been instrumental in making the IT Park a vibrant place where hundreds of youths currently work. He has Master’s and PhD in Computer Engineering from the University of Tokushima, Japan and Masterof Management from the University of Canberra, Australia. He received his Bachelor of Engineering, first class honors’ in Electrical Engineering from the University of Wollongong in Australia in 1999 and has over 14 yearscombined experience in programming, teaching, information system design, database administration, research, and senior level management in the corporate sector.
Neera is Partner and Co-Founder of DASRA India which started in 1999. Her overarching goal is to enable social entrepreneurs and funders with the support they need to achieve big goals in areas such as gender, urban resilience and sanitation through system change and collaborative philanthropy. Neera plays a crucial role in bringing capacity building, knowledge, funding, and networks to the sector. She holds an MBA from Harvard Business School and is a fellow of the third class of the Kamalnayan Bajaj Fellowship of the Ananta Aspen Center and a fellow of the Aspen Global Leadership Network. She is a Board Member of The Hunger Project, American School of Bombay, and Aangan Trust. She is Canadian, has lived in Mumbai for 21 years, runs Dasra with her husband Deval and busy raising feminist sons – Ayush, Laxman and Akbar. – all teenagers!
Sangay has over 16 years of experience in planning and coordinating programs and projects, fund mobilization and budgeting for projects, liaison and public relations, human resource management, financial management and Bhutan’s development philosophy of Gross National Happiness (GNH). He currently serves as Country Director at the Ennovent Bhutan.
Sangay is committed to working towards fulfilling the country’s goal of GNH by striving for the highest standards, live by the higher ideals and nurture a sense of duty towards fellow Bhutanese. He has a Master’s of Public Administration and Post Graduate Diploma in Public Policy from Australian National University, Canberra, Australia and Post Graduate Certificate in Financial Management from Royal Institute of Management, Bhutan.
Sonam Chophel is an avid designer and passionate entrepreneur. He started Bhutan’s first branding and marketing agency andalso founded Druksell, Bhutan’s largest impact marketplace for made and grown in Bhutan products. Currently, Druksell is the leading e-commerce marketplace in Bhutan and serves customers across the world with international operations in regional countries such as Thailand.
He has received numerous awards and recognitions for his startup, brand development, and creativity both nationally and internationally. His vast and extensive portfolio of expertise spreads across a wide range of areas including innovation, advertising, digital marketing, travel technology, branding and technology innovation.
Tandin Tshering is currently serving as the Director General of the Department of Cottage and Small Industry, Ministry of Economic Affairs, Royal Govt. of Bhutan. His mandate is to promote growth of vibrant and sustainable cottage and small industries thereby contributing to the overall socio-economic development of the country. He led the amendment of the Cottage and Small Industry Policy 2019, Foreign Direct Investment Policy 2010, and the Companies Act of the Kingdom of Bhutan 2016. Further he carried out various licensing reforms which has helped in drastic improvements in the ease of doing business ranking.
He has served as a Board Director in various government institutions and State-Owned Companies. Currently he is the Board Director for Agency for Promotion of Indigenous Arts and Crafts, SABAH Bhutan and Farm Machinery Cooperation Limited. He brings over two and half decade of experiences in trade and industry development. Apart from his Master’s Degree in Business Management, he has undergone various courses and trainings in specialized fields such as in WTO Trade Policy, Project Planning and Management etc.
Prashanth co-founded Accel Partners India in 2008. Prior joining the firm he began investing in Indian technology startups (as early as in 2004) much before they acquired global attention. He is an early-stage investor and successful serial entrepreneur where he started his investing career as Co-Founder of Erasmic, one of India’s first early-stage funds and founded two more enterprises on the internet and multimedia publishing domains. Prashanth has his finger on the pulse of the Indian technology scenario. His primary focus is on consumer Internet services, online marketplaces, and SaaS. With his keen ability to spot emerging opportunities, he has invested in Indian technology start-ups like Agrostar, BlueStone, BookMyShow, Clevertap, FabHotels, Housing, Homelane, Rentomojo and TeaBox, and many more were Prashanth serves as a board member. Accel also has invested in category defining companies like Flipkart, Freshworks, Ola, Swiggy, Cult and BlackBuck.
Prashanth is a Chairman of Shikshana Foundation, which was started in 2002 with a vision to ensure quality education for every child studying in the Government/Public Education system. Under his leadership over the last 10 years Shikshana has expanded to 40,000 plus Government schools, reaching out to millions of children.He is currently, also serving as a Chairperson on the United Way of Bengaluru (UWBe), a unique social organization which brings together all the relevant stakeholders such as corporates, Government bodies, and community members to address any environmental challenges faced by the community.
Vishal Mahadevia is the Managing Director, Head of India, and member of the Executive Management Group at Warburg Pincus. Prior to joining Warburg Pincus in 2006, he was a Principal at Greenbriar Equity Group, a fund focused on private equity investments in the transportation sector. Prior to that, Mr. Mahadevia worked at Three Cities Research, a New York-based private equity fund and as a consultant with McKinsey & Company. He currently serves as a Managing Director of Warburg Pincus India Private Limited. Mr. Mahadevia is also a Director of Gangavaram Port Limited, IDFC First Bank Limited and ApolloTyres Limited. He received a B.S. in Economics with a concentration in Finance and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from the University of Pennsylvania.
Shri. Umamaheswaran R, Scientist/Engineer-OS, and Scientific Secretary, ISRO, has made significant contribution to the system integration, checkout, and avionics of ISRO’s launch vehicles viz PSLV, GSLV & GSLV-MkIII. He has been the Chief Designer (Integration) of major sub-assemblies including Equipment Bay of the Launch vehicle. Many of the mission critical circuits residing in the vehicle including the entire pyro chain for all the three launch vehicles has been designed by him. Over the years, he has evolved as a domain expert in the field of system electrical integration, checkout, ground station and avionics. He was also the Vehicle Director for the remarkably successful GSLV D5/GSAT-14 Mission with the indigenous cryo-stage.
From May 4th2018 onward, he has taken charge as Associate Scientific Secretary, ISRO HQ and as Scientific Secretary, ISRO from August 1stonward. He has been awarded ISRO Individual Merit Award-2013, ISRO Team Awards-2006 for PSLV and in 2014 for GSLV and ISRO Outstanding Achievement Award for 2018. He also received the ASI-ISRO award for the year 2016. He is the life member of Aeronautical Society of India (AeSI), Systems Society of India (SSI), and Indian Society for Advancement of Materials and Process Engineering (ISAMPE). He is also the recipient of Honoris Causa from the Sathyabama Institute of Science and Technology, Chennai (2019). He is the National Vice President for Indian Society of Systems, Science and Engineering (ISSE) and the President of ISSE Bangalore Chapter. He became a corresponding member of International Academy of Astronautics in 2019.
Pramod is the Chairperson of Clix Capital, as well as ICRIER, an economic research think tank. He was also the Founder and CEO of Genpact Ltd., and the Chairman and Co-Founder of the Skills Academy.Earlier he was the President & CEO of GE Capital in India from 1994 to 2005, and GE Capital Asia from 1998 to 2001. He was with the General Electric Corporation in UK and the USA and Asia for over 25 years.
Pramod is considered thePioneer of theBusiness Process Industry in India. He founded Genpact in 1996 and led it till 2011. Genpact is a NYSE publicly listed Global business that currently spans 26+ countries and employs over 90,000 people. Under his leadership, Genpact also pioneered this industry in Eastern Europe, China, and Latin America. Pramod is currently the Chairman of Clix Capital, a Financial Services Business in India focused on providing digital platforms and financial services to consumers and small businesses.He founded the Skills Academy, that focuses on providing vocational skills for the under privileged. He is the Co-Founder of Asha Impact, an organisation focused on Social Impact Investments and Advocacy in key areas such as Education, Waste Management, Healthcare and Financial Inclusions. He is a Strategic Advisor to Kedaara, a Private Equity firm.He sits on the Governing Board of Help Age India, Vishwas, an NGO for handicapped children He currently serves on the Board of DLF Ltd., and in the past, has served on the Board of Bank of India and NDTV and SRF Ltd. He has been the Chairman of NASSCOM and was voted IT Man of the Year by DataQuest, and Manger of the Year by EY & Co. He was also the President of TIE, Delhi-NCR.
John Chambers is the Founder and CEO of JC2 Ventures. In his role, Chambers focuses on helping disruptive startups from around the world build and scale, while also promoting broader development of startup nations and a startup world. He invests in companies across categories and geographies that are leading market transitions. He serves on the Board of Directors for Bloom Energy, OpenGov, Pindrop, Sprinklr, and Uniphore. In addition to investing in and mentoring startups, Chambers is focused on promoting entrepreneurship, gender equality, and accelerating overall new business creation around the world, as he believes that startups will be the core driver of economic growth and job creation in the Digital Age. He was appointed Global Ambassador of the French Tech by President Emmanuel Macron of France. Chambers is also the Chairman of the US-India Strategic Partnership Forum (USISPF).
Prior to founding JC2 Ventures in January 2018, Chambers served as CEO, Chairman and Executive Chairman at Cisco Systems. During his 25+ years at Cisco, he helped grow the company from $70 million when he joined in 1991, to $1.2 billion when he became CEO in 1995, to $47 billion when he stepped down as CEO in 2015. John also spearheaded the creation and development of Cisco’s country digitization program, where he partnered with government leaders across the world to harness the power of technology to create economic opportunities.
Chambers has received numerous awards for his leadership, including being names the number two ‘Best-Performing CEOs in the World’ in 2015 from Harvard Business Review and receiving the Edison Achievement Award for Innovation. Chambers was also awarded the Outstanding Civil Service Medal by the U.S. Army, as well as France’s National Defense Gold Medal, the only foreign business leader to ever receive the award in its 35-year history. Most recently, Chambers was awarded the Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian awards recognized by the Government of India, for his contributions to trade and the tech industry in India.
Ritu Kumar is one of India’s foremost designers. She has developed a unique style of her own, reflecting the ancient traditions of Indian craftsmanship in a contemporary vocabulary. With a background in art history and museology, which has enriched her horizons, her understanding of ancient designs and the innovative use of traditional crafts has created a new classicism.She began her work with four hand-block printers and two tables in a small village near Calcutta forty years ago, was the first woman to introduce the ‘boutique’ culture in India under the brand name ‘Ritu’. Today she has around 84 outlets, both India and abroad. She is credited as being one of the first Indian designers who was catalytic in bringing a contemporary idiom to several ancient skills and has been a strong force in marketing them to a dynamic modern India.
In 2002 Ritu Kumar, joined by her son Amrish, launched a sub brand – Ritu Kumar, LABEL which uses the established forte of traditional Indian design and converts it into a fashion oriented international product. Her book “Costumes and Textiles of Royal India” published by Christies in October 1999 chronicles the history of textiles and art design in India.Ritu was awarded the 'Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini award' in 2007, for her achievements and contribution in the field of fashion. To add to her achievements the French government bestowed the prestigious award of "chevalier des arts et des lettres (knight of the order of arts and letters) . The award is recognition of her contribution to Indian textile crafts, and traditional techniques.Ritu Kumar, has also been awarded the Padma Shri Award 2013, the country's fourth highest civilian award for her exceptional and distinguished service in the field of fashion, textile, and craftsmanship.She was bestowed with the ‘Vogue - Women of the Year, Lifetime Achievement’ honour in November 2018.
Eng. Sanath Panawennage is a Chartered Engineer specialized in Electronic and Telecommunication Engineering, and a Fellow of the Institution of Engineers, Sri Lanka.In 2008, Eng. Panawennage was appointed as the Director General and Chief Executive of the Arthur C Clarke Institute of Modern Technologies (ACCIMT), the position he is currently holding and, immediately prior to that, from 2001 to 2008 he was functioning as the Deputy Director General of Sri Lanka Broadcasting Corporation (SLBC), the National Radio of Sri Lanka.
His professional experience spans across telecommunication engineering; broadcast engineering; corporate management involving engineering management and research management; and policy, strategy and regulatory matters in radio and TV broadcasting and in Science, Technology, and Innovation. His research interests include Radio Wave Propagation Modeling and Space Policy. Eng. Panawennage is credited with the pioneering role he has been playing in acquisition and development of Sri Lanka’s national capacity in space technologies.
Som Parkash is the Minister of State for Commerce and Industry, Government of India. He is a Member of Parliament of India (Lok Sabha) representing Hoshiarpur Parliamentary Constituency (Punjab). He has been an elected member of Legislative Assembly of State of Punjab for two consecutive terms representing Phagwara Assembly Constituency. He has a Master’s degree in Economics from the prestigious Punjab University, Chandigarh.
Before joining politics, Shri. Som Parkash served as a Member for the coveted Indian Administrative Service and held various important administrative positions. During his 37 years of public service as a bureaucrat, he served in various positions in various Departments of the Government of Punjab.
Presently, the JS & Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at GeM, Dr. Rajeev Kandpal is an alumnus of IIT-R/MDI and an officer P&T Accounts and Finance Services, 1995 batch.
He has over 22 years of experience and has worked under organizations like Government of India, State Government of Uttarakhand, Central Public Sector Undertaking (BSNL).He has handled diverse assignments related to financial advice, establishment administration, project implementation and monitoring. Prior to joining GeM, he was working as Director, Department of Industry Policy and Promotion where he handled the “Startup India” and “Make in India” programme. Shri Kandpal holds an MTech degree from IIT Roorkee and a PGDBM degree from MDI, Gurgaon. He is also a CFA and a PhD in Public Policy.
Mr. Salil Seth is Senior Manager at the Startup India Team at Invest India. Startup India is a flagship initiative of the Government of India, launched by the Hon’ble PM Shri Narendra Modi in January of 2016. Mr Seth is in charge of driving the States’ Startup Ranking and Resource Partnerships to promote collaboration and cooperation between all stakeholders of the startup ecosystem.
Under his leadership, the team has worked towards encouraging States and Union Territories to take proactive steps towards identifying good practices, assisting mutual learning, and strengthening startup ecosystems within their jurisdictions. In January 2016, 4 states had a dedicated startup policy. Today, as a result of two successful editions of the States Startup Ranking under his leadership, 30 States and UTs have startup policies. These policies enable a conducive startup ecosystem at the local level by providing the much-needed seed funding, incubation, mentoring, capacity building and market access support.
Mr Seth has worked with multiple government departments and has been pivotal to the formulation of the Delhi startup policy. Mr Seth is from a Consulting and Investment Banking background and before joining Invest India, he has worked at Ernst and Young in the Audit role. He holds a Masters in Finance from Frankfurt School of Finance & Management. He was also a topper across the Central Board for Secondary Education and has an undergraduate degree from the University of Delhi.
Kunal Upadhyay is the Co-Founder of Bharat Fund and CIIE.CO at IIM Ahmedabad which back startups across deep-tech and inclusive technologies. Prior to this, Kunal led Infuse Ventures which is India's first cleantech focused incubation and venture fund - backed by MNRE, BP, IFC, among others. Kunal is also an advisor to the Asian Development Bank to invest in climate tech innovations. He is an MBA from IIM Ahmedabad and B.Tech. from IIT Madras and was recently awarded Forty under 40 by The Economic Times.
Mr. João Mendes Borga is the Executive Director, Startup Portugal. He is passionate about, innovation, technology and to help entrepreneurs and the startup community to grow and succeed. Mr. Borga is experienced in supporting growth both in large companies and entrepreneurial environments.
He has an MBA, with over 9 years of experience in business development, strategy, operations, startup management, and building, managing and leading high-performance teams.
Dr. Anand Deshpande is the Founder, Chairman and Managing Director of Persistent Systems since its inception and is responsible for the overall leadership, strategy, and management of the Company.As a true technology visionary, Anand’s strengths, lie in identifying and investing in next-generation technologies and encouraging internal entrepreneurship to ensure that Persistent Systems stays at the forefront of technology innovation.
Anand has served numerous positions at various professional and non-profit organizations viz. NASSCOM’s Executive Council, ACM (Association for Computing Machinery) India, where he was the first President, SEAP (Software Exporters’ Association of Pune), Pune Chapter of CSI (Computer Society of India), CII’s Pune Zonal Council, Trustee in the Computer History Museum, Dean’s Advisory Council in the School of Informatics, Computing and Engineering of Indiana University, and Member of the Executive Committee of MCCIA.Anand is a founding member of iSPIRT, India’s first product think tank, started with the vision of creating a vibrant entrepreneurial ecosystem in India and is a founder member of Inter Institutional Inclusive Innovations Centre (i4C). i4C is an independent, non-profit entity which acts as a platform to pro-actively scout, showcase and handhold technology innovations, especially aimed at the base of the pyramid.Currently, he serves as a Trustee of the VLDB Endowment (www.vldb.org), Trustee of BAIF and as a Trustee of Persistent Foundation. With members of his family, he has established DeAsra Foundation (http://www.deasra.in), a non-profit entity which focuses on creating self-employment at scale.
Prof. Anil Dattatraya Sahasrabudhe, Professor of Mechanical Engineering at Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Guwahati is currently Chairman of All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE).
Prof. Anil D. Sahasrabudhe has held several important Academic, Research and Administrative positions at Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, Tata Consulting Engineers, North Eastern Regional Institute of Science and Technology (NERIST), Itanagar (Arunachal Pradesh) and IIT Guwahati. He also served as Director, College of Engineering, Pune (CoEP) since 2006 on deputation from IIT, Guwahati prior to joining as AICTE Chairman. As an academician and researcher in NERIST and IIT Guwahati, and as an administrator in the capacity of Director, CoEP, he has taken up several new initiatives for Academic, Curricular & Co-curricular activities, Entrepreneurship, Research and Good Governance.He is Chairman, Basic Scientific Research (BSR), Empowered Committee of UGC & SWAYAM Board. He is Fellow of ISTE, IET, Institution of Engineers (IE), INAE.He has been bestowed with several awards which include "Maha-Intrapreneur Award-2011" of Praj Industries, Jeevan Gaurav Puraskar (Life Time Achievement Award) from MIT World Peace University, Pune in 2019, Mahatma Gandhi Leadership award from Indian Achievers Forum and CSR Times (2019).
Prof. Ashok Misra is currently NASI (National Academy of Sciences, India) Distinguished Professor at the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Earlier he was Director IIT Bombay; Chairman-India Intellectual Ventures and at IIT Delhi. He is a Director on the Boards of Jubilant Life Sciences Ltd., Jubilant Pharma Ltd., Kirloskar Electric Company Ltd. and Higher Education Financing Agency. Earlier he was on the Boards of Reliance Industries Ltd., NTPC and RCF. He has held several responsibilities with MHRD, including Chairman of the Standing Committee of the IIT Council. He is a Fellow of National Academy of Sciences India and was its President from 2006-08; a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering; Founder President of the Polymer Processing Academy; member of several professional societies and the Founder President of IIT Alumni Centre, Bengaluru.
Chandula Abeywickrema is the Co-Founder of Ath Pavura, the first ever TV reality show for Social Entrepreneurs and Impact Investors in Sri Lanka telecasting on the largest national TV network. He is also the Founder and Chairman of Lanka Impact Investing Network (LIIN), which is the first of Its kind agency on impact investing with the purpose of investing in existing and emerging social Enterprises, promoting social entrepreneurship across Sri Lanka.LIIN founded the first ever social impact fund in Sri Lanka in partnership with UNDP and launched a platform dedicated for women social entrepreneurs, that promotes gender lens investing.
An accomplished and respected senior commercial banker with lead expertise and experience in retail and development banking. Chandula has a proven track record of over 30 years and is recognized in Asia as an expert in Financial Inclusion. Chandula spearheaded the retail and development banking strategy as the Deputy General Manager of Hatton National Bank (HNB). He hasserved asthe CEO of CCC Solutions,the project management arm of Ceylon Chamber of Commerce from 2014 to 2015, as the Consultant Strategy and Marketing for National Savings Bank (NSB) 2016 to 2017 and Regional Development Bank (RDB) 2020. Chandula has participated in numerous international engagements as an expert in the area of financial inclusion and is the current Chairman of the Banking with the Poor Network (BWTP), Asia's largest micro finance network. He was also appointed by the Asian Bankers Association (ABA) asthe advisor on Financial Inclusion to ABA. He is the Chairman of CSR Sri Lanka, the national apex body for Corporate Social Responsibility, representing the largest number private sector companies.
Dr. Renu Swarup is presently Secretary, Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India. Having served in Department of Biotechnology for over 30 years, she also holds the position of Chairperson, Biotechnology Industry Research Assistance Council (BIRAC), a Public Sector Company incorporated by the Government to nurture and promote innovation research in the Biotech Enterprise with special focus on Start-ups and SMEs.As the Secretary of Government of India, Department of Biotechnology, she leads a Network of 16 Autonomous Research Institutes, 2 Public Sector Undertaking and a R&D Network of more than 5000 projects across more than 100 research institutes, universities, and laboratories. In the recent COVID Pandemic situation, she has led the COVID Vaccine and Diagnostic Mission. The Public Sector BIRAC, for which she is the founding Managing Director and now Chairperson, has supported nearly 3000 startups and over 50 incubators.
A Fellow of the National Academy of Sciences (NASI) India, A Life Member of Trust for Advancement of Agricultural Sciences (TAAS) and a Member of the Organization for Women in Science for the Developing World (OWSD), she was awarded the “BioSpectrum Person of the Year Award” in 2012. “National Entrepreneurship Awards 2017”, TiE WomENABLER Award 2018, “Dr. P. Sheel Memorial Lecture Award” 2018 by NASI and the TWAS Regional Office Prize on Science Diplomacy in 2018. She has been awarded the Agriculture Research Leadership Award 2019.
In this role, Edwin and his colleagues work to ensure that Singapore becomes a centre of market led innovation projects, targeting our international markets. This will result in a strong base of startups, SMEs and larger local companies developing and commercializing new products and solutions, creating value and jobs in Singapore. His previous roles at Enterprise Singapore include driving the agency’s efforts to strengthen SMEs in the Manufacturing & Engineering sectors, supporting the growth of Singapore’s startup eco-system, Edwin oversees the investment arm of EnterpriseSingapore, SEED Capital Pte Ltd. Before joining Enterprise Singapore, Edwin spent 8 years with the Economic Development Board in a range of portfolios, including 4 years as EDB’s Centre Director in Milan covering Italy, Switzerland, and Spain. Edwin is a graduate of the London School of Economics, and holds an MBA from the National University of Singapore. He is married with 3 sons.
Ritesh Agarwal is a young entrepreneur and the Founder and CEO of OYO Hotels & Homes. He believes that everyone deserves a safe hygienic and comfortable living space, irrespective of their budget and founded OYO in India in 2013 to achieve this aim. Today the unicorn start-up is India's largest hotel chain and is present in over 800 cities across 80 countries. OYO is backed by leading investors, including the SoftBank Vision Fund, Sequoia Capital, Lightspeed Ventures, Hero Enterprise, and China Lodging Group, amongst others. Ritesh was the first Asian resident to be accepted to the Thiel Fellowship. He is a Co-Chairman of the Confederation of Indian Industry National Committee on Tourism & Hospitality.
Mrs. Mukta Dutta Tomar was appointed Ambassador of India to the Federal Republic of Germany in April 2017. Since her joining the Indian Foreign Service, Mrs. Mukta D. Tomar has held several diplomatic assignments, in Indian Embassies in Madrid, Kathmandu, Paris and Yangon. She has served at the Permanent Mission of India to the United Nations at New York. She was also Deputy High Commissioner of India to Bangladesh and Consul General of India in Chicago. Mrs. Tomar has served in the Ministry of External Affairs, New Delhi in various Divisions including the Americas Division; and headed Investment, Technology Promotion & Economic Division; Consular, Passport & Visa; and Administration.
An intrepid entrepreneur, investor and recently-turned author with multiple passions and interests, Sunil Kant Munjal is the youngest son of Brijmohan Lall Munjal, the Founder of the Hero Group. Besides setting up many new enterprises and providing strategic inputs for the Hero Group as chairman of Hero Corporate Service, he was also one of the managing directors of Hero Cycles, and subsequently the Joint Managing Director of Hero MotoCorp (formerly Hero Honda). As the Chairman of Hero Enterprise, he oversees diverse service and manufacturing businesses, and has made strategic investments in areas ranging from e-commerce to hospitality both in India and overseas. Along with a few others, he has also helped create a base for risk capital, angel funding and venture funding in India through investments in digital learning, community transportation, healthcare, women empowerment and children’s education. He has also invested in alternative asset management funds that take an entrepreneurial approach to socio-economic challenges.
He has been actively involved in corporate governance and policy advocacy for many decades. He sits on the boards of DCM Shriram, Escorts, Bharti Foundation, Indian Institute of Corporate Affairs and the advisory boards of Coca Cola India, Indian Angels Network Fund and UK India Business Council (UKIBC). He has also been on the boards of IIT Ropar, Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) and PNB Gilts Ltd and has chaired the board of Punjab Technical University.Sunil Kant Munjal is passionate about education, healthcare, and skill development. He has co-founded BML Munjal University, a unique higher education venture that pioneers next practices in knowledge delivery and student development and is President of the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, in Ludhiana, which has been ranked as a leading non-metro hospital and the number one private teaching hospital in North India. He also chairs the BCM Foundation, set up in memory of his grandfather, which runs schools and colleges across Punjab. He chairs the governing body of his alma mater, The Doon School, considered to be India’s leading high school and chairs the board of MEPSC, a government and industry supported skills’ initiative to create a professionally competent workforce for India. He also sits on the boards of IIM Ahmedabad (IIMA), Indian School of Business (ISB), Shri Ram College of Commerce (SRCC) and University of Tokyo.
India’s leading magazine India Today chose him as one of the “Faces of the Millennium” for business . In 2016, he won the Jehangir Ghandy Medal for Social and Industrial Peace. In the same year, he was conferred a D. Lit by SRM University, Chennai, and became a Distinguished Fellow at the Institute of Directors. In 2018, Punjab University conferred on him the Udyog Rattan Award for role in the state’s industrial development. He also received the GlobScot Award from the Scottish government in 2012 for being one of the prominent employers in Scotland.
Hari Menon is the CEO of Bigbasket.com, a company he co-founded in December 2011 with a vision of setting up India’s finest online food and grocery company. BigBasket, India’s largest online supermarket, delivers the entire range of groceries, fresh fruits and vegetables, fresh meat, dairy products, processed foods, toiletries, personal care products, gourmet foods and a wide range of household products in 26 cities in India. Their range has 45,000 products and over 1000 brands.
He has received widespread recognition for his extraordinary contribution as an entrepreneur. He and his company are recipients of prominent awards namely - Consumer Internet Company of the Year by VC Circle Awards 2016; Ranked 4th by YourStory in the Top 100 Indian startups with gravity defying momentum in 2015; Best Startup of the Year in 2014 by Bangalore Management Association; Best Online Grocer at the Coca Cola Golden Spoon Awards 2016; First runner up (Silver) at the Global eCommerce Summit Awards held in Barcelona; Best Retail and E-Commerce App of the Year at the AWS Mobility Awards 2017; Rated the Top Brand in the Forrester’s India Customer Experience Index 2016. Very recently, BigBasket was awarded Startup of the Year at the Business Standard Annual Awards 2019. To his independent credit, Hari has been awarded for entrepreneurship by the Indira Group of Institutions; AUDI-RITZ ICON AWARDS from RITZ lifestyle magazine in the category of Entrepreneurship and “Champion of Tomorrow” by CEO INDIA Magazine.
Mr. Lekhraj Bhatta joined politics in 1973 and took the membership of Nepal Communist Party (Fourth Convention) led by Mohan Bikram Singh in 1976. He later joined CPN (Masaal) and CPN (Unity Center) to finally become a full-time member of CPN-Maoist in 1995. He went on to become central member in 2001 and politburo member.In the CA Election 2008, Bhatta was elected from Kailali-5 with 17,979 votes. His closest opponent Dirgha Raj Bhatta (NC) received 13,638 votes while Hari Shankar Yogi (CPN-UML) got 7,597 votes to come in third position.Bhatta was appointed as Labor Minister in the government led by Pushpa Kamal Dahal 'Prachanda'. He looked after the Ministry for Commerce and Supplies in the government led by Dr. Baburam Bhattarai. Now he is the standing committee member of Nepal Communist Party.
Ms. Bernstein-Reich is an investment banker and business development specialist for Emerging Markets. She is the Co-Founder and Managing Director of the Israeli office of A&G Partners. A&G Partners, founded in 2002,is a group operating on the axis of Israel, India and Sri Lanka in various sectors including Agritech via the Agribator Technologies Center in Noida, real estate projects in Mysore and Sri Lanka, innovation consulting, investment banking, technology transfer, and entertainment. Works with the Aditya Birla Group Innovation Office and Corporate Strategy to connect Israeli technologies and opportunities with the group. A&G was the Israeli host of the Gyan Milan- The Israel-India Technology Forum, bringing leading CEO-CIOs from India to learn of first-hand of the Israeli innovation.
Bernstein-Reich is a frequent speaker about “Doing Business in India” and a commentator about India in the Israeli media. She is a columnist about India business in the Israeli magazine ‘The Marker’ and the Ha’aretz, Israel’s leading newspaper’s digital blog. She has served as a consultant and reviewer to the India-China Fund of the Israeli Ministry of Economy. She also managed the first Israel-India Innovation Bridge program in 2018 that was initiated by PM Netanyahu and PM Modi. She was awarded an Iconic Women Award by the WEF- Women Economic Forum 2016. She was awarded by S.P.Mandali’s WeSchool, Friend of India 2020 in for her economic contribution to India. She has co-founded several start-up companies in Boston, Santa Clara and Israel and worked with the Israeli technology incubators to promote strategic partnerships between Israeli and American technology companies in the Silicon Valley.
Debjani Ghosh is the President of the National Association of Software & Services Companies (NASSCOM) since April 2018. A veteran of the technology industry, she is the fifth president of NASSCOM and the first woman at the helm in three-decade history.She is a firm believer in the power of technology in enhancing lives and livelihoods, leveraging it for societal good. She was instrumental in developing ‘Think Digital, Think India’ strategy aimed at establishing India as a hub for digital talent and innovation.
As the NASSCOM President, she actively works with the industry and Government to accelerate the growth of the Industry and strengthen India’s position as hub for Innovation and Digital Talent. Her approach has been focused on a three-point agenda - talent development and re-skilling, strengthening the innovation culture in the country and collaborating with governments across the world to open new opportunities for the Indian IT industry.In January 2018, she was felicitated by the President of India under the auspices of the ‘First Ladies’ program, which honours exceptional women pioneers in their respective fields. In 2020, she has been honoured by Vogue as the Tech Leader of the Year 2020. She has also been listed among the India’s most powerful women in tech by Business Today.With multiple feathers in her cap, before joining NASSCOM, she was the first woman to lead Intel India and the Manufacturers' Association for Information Technology (MAIT), she was also a member of the executive council at NASSCOM.
Shri. Abhishek Dev is an Indian Administrative Service Officer of the 2007 Batch of the AGMUT Cadre. He has a wide experience of working in diverse and varied settings in the nation. He has served in the remote frontier region of Tawang district of the state of Arunachal Pradesh and is currently serving in the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. He has also served in the metropolis of Delhi and in the planned city of Chandigarh. He has served as a Deputy Commissioner in three districts namely Tawang (Arunachal Pradesh), South West Delhi (NCT of Delhi) and South Andaman (Port Blair), thus having a rich field experience of more than six years.He has also served in the Secretariat i.e., the policy making branch of the Govt. in the UT of Chandigarh and is at present holding the charges of Public Works Department, Rural Development, Urban Development, Industries and MD – ANIIDCO in the Andaman & Nicobar Administration.
Ms. Shruti Singh, a 2004-batch IAS officer of Punjab Cadre, has completed her Bachelor’s degree in History, followed by a Master's in Public Administration. She was Ludhiana’s first woman Municipal Corporation (MC) Commissioner. She was also appointed as the Chairman of Ludhiana Improvement Trust in addition to being the MC Commissioner and Chief Administrator of the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA).
Born in 1982, Ms. Shruti Singh has served as the Deputy Commissioner in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Jalandhar. She has worked in various capacities in the Department of Finance, Industries, Revenue, etc.She is currently deputed as Director at Department for Promotion of Industry and Internal Trade and is driving the Startup India initiative. Throughout her tenure, she has been instrumental in supporting various regulatory reforms and initiatives for strengthening the startup and innovation ecosystem in India.
Dr. BVR Mohan Reddy is a visionary who firmly placed India on the global engineering, research, and development (ER&D) services map by establishing Cyient (formerly Infotech Enterprises) in 1991. His efforts led Cyient to contributemore than $5 billion in cumulative exports from India to several global clients, including many Fortune 100 companies. His efforts led to the creation of jobs for engineering professionals across 14 countries.
Dr. Reddy is the founding member of Hyderabad Angels along with industry leaders and today HA has over 100 angel investors in its network. Dr. Reddy is also a Founding Director of T-Hub, the largest incubation centre in India for start-ups by Government of Telangana. Also founded Saranam Investments which manages his portfolio of investment into start-ups, interested in Edu-Tech, Health-Tech and Green-Tech, and works along with various incubators, accelerators, and corporate start-up programs. Dr. Reddy took up several leadership positions to promote higher education in the country. He is currently the Chairman of the Board of Governors of IIT-Hyderabad and also IIT-Roorkee, is a member of the Leadership Advisory Board (LAB) at the University of Michigan College of Engineering, USA, and a member of the Court of Governors of Administrative Staff College of India (ASCI).Dr. Reddy is nominated as member of the committee to establish AICTE-International Centers on New Technologies (ICONs) focussing on Artificial Intelligence / Machine Learning / Internet of Things / Block Chain / Quantum Computing / Cyber Security, etc.Dr. Reddy received India’s fourth-highest civilian award—the Padma Shri—in 2017 for his contribution to trade and industry.
As past President of TiE Silicon Valley and Chairman of TiE Global, Shukla presided over one of the most powerful networks focused on technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley and beyond. Shukla hosted Prime Minister Modi during his visit to Silicon Valley for Digital India Dinner as well as for Indo-US StartUp Konnect. He also worked closely with Mr. Amitabh Kant, then Secretary, DIPP to provide critical inputs for Prime Minister’s Start Up India initiative. He has also worked with a number of state governments in India to help craft their policies on startups as well as to host them during their visits to Silicon Valley. He was also invited by the Hon. Minister of Science and Technology for advice on leveraging Diaspora for innovation in science and technology in India.
Shukla is currently General Partner of an early-stage venture fund called Monta Vista Capital that invests in companies that leverage AI/ML, block chain and self-driving systems to transform industries.Shukla has had a long and varied career that includes sales, marketing, and general management, and has a proven track record of leading companies through rapid growth. He has worked as a senior marketing executive in large technology companies in Silicon Valley and has been involved with numerous early-stage companies as CEO, investor, board member, or advisor.Shukla is currently a trustee of Foundation for Excellence India Trust (www.ffe.org). He was its founding President for the first 18 years of this organization that has provided scholarship to over 20,000 talented but needy students and enabled them to become engineers and doctors in India. FFE is consistently rated among the top NGOs in India by rating organizations.
Ashutosh Sharma is a Secretary to the Government of India since January 2015, heading the Department of Science and Technology (DST), where he helped initiate several new programs related to: infrastructure and human capacity building; innovation and startups; R&D in advanced manufacturing, waste processing, clean energy and cyber-physical systems; industry-academia cooperation; science communication; women scientists; and major international collaborations in the areas of priority for the nation.
He has published over 350 peer reviewed papers, filed over 15 patents, given over 150 invited or keynote conference presentations and mentored a successful nanotechnology startup.Ashutosh is a recipient of numerous honors and awards including the inaugural Infosys Prize in Engineering and Computer Science, TWAS Science Prize of the World Academy of Sciences, Bessel Research Award of the Humboldt Foundation, J. C. Bose Fellowship, S. S. Bhatnagar Prize, Homi J. Bhabha Award of UGC, The Syed Husain Zaheer Medal and the Meghnad Saha Medal of INSA, Distinguished Alumni Awards of IIT Kanpur and SUNY Buffalo, Firodia Award, the Life-time Achievement Award of the Indian Science Congress and several Doctor of Science honoris causa, including from SUNY Buffalo, and Jadavpur University.Ashutosh is an elected Fellow of The Indian National Science Academy, The Indian Academy of Sciences, The National Academy of Sciences, India and Indian National Academy of Engineering, The World Academy of Sciences (TWAS) and the Asia-Pacific Academy of Materials.
Ramanan Ramanathan is the Mission Director of the Atal Innovation Mission, NITI Aayog (National Institution for Transforming India) Government of India The Atal Innovation mission is a strategic and holistic national inclusive innovation initiative aligned with UN SDG, spanning schools, universities, industry, and NGOs. As the Mission Director of AIM, Ramanan has been instrumental to date in the launch and execution of several nationwide innovation and entrepreneurship initiatives resulting in 10,000+ Atal Tinkering Labs being established in schools nationwide with 5400+ operational across all districts and over 2 million students having access to innovative tools and technologies like 3D printers, robotics, miniaturized electronics do it yourself kits.
R Ramanan is the Senior Vice President of Tata Consultancy Services, prior to this he was the Managing Director & Chief Executive Officer and a member of the Board of Directors of CMC Ltd., a subsidiary of the globally acclaimed Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).Ramanan’s illustrious career in the IT industry spans more than three decades when he joined TCS in 1981 after graduating from IIT Bombay in Electrical Engineering. Ramanan played an instrumental role in the growth of TCS with a variety of responsibilities ranging from software product development, technical marketing, global business development, and general management of large delivery centers of TCS.Ramanan is also a Harvard Business School Advanced Management Program Alumni and accredited by Cambridge University in Sustainability Leadership. He was also elected as the Lifetime Chair of HBS AMP187 Alumni by HBS.Ramanan received the following awards:CEO of the Year award in 2015 from CMO Asia, India’s top 3 most “Value” able CEO recognition by Business World in 2011 and 2013, Indira Gandhi Sadbhavana and Rajiv Gandhi Shiromani awards in 2005-2006 and many other recognitions for outstanding contributions in Innovation and Business Leadership. He has recently been honored with Mint SAP Digitalist Award -19th April 2018 in Mumbai.
Sixit is the Co-Founder and CEO of Tootle, the ride sharing application. Prior to co-founding Tootle, Sixit has had career spanning 12 years in both Telecommunication and Financial Services with the major focus on Technology. His major areas of work in Telecommunications focused on Radio Network Design and Engineering, while he worked on Digital financial services during his tenure at the Bank. Through Tootle, Sixit envisions creating a cutting-edge technology that can enable people with ‘freedom of movement’ and creating jobs and engaging youths with a firm belief that sharing mobility would help transform our cities and urban design.
Shereen Bhan is the Managing Editor of CNBC-TV18 with over 20 years of experience in the field of Television Broadcast, tracking corporate, policy news and events that defined the business landscape in India. For more than a decade now, Shereen has been not only producing and anchoring flagship shows like 'India Business Hour' and Young Turks', she has also been hands-on in guiding and molding young business journalists. She has been responsible for breaking a range of news stories that have redefined the Indian economic landscape in recent times and has also interviewed some of the biggest names in business and politics, both domestic and global. Shereen is also the Anchor & Editor of 'Young Turks', one of India's longest running shows on entrepreneurship – a section that over the last 18 years has successfully built a niche category in business news programming. Shereen is also the Author of Young Turks, a book published by Random House India. Shereen has interviewed some of the biggest names in Business from legendary investor Warren Buffet to Bill Gates, Satya Nadella, Richard Branson, Sheryl Sandberg, Indra Nooyi to name just a few. She has also spent several years tracking the political-economy and has interviewed several Finance Ministers and other Cabinet Ministers over the years.
Over the course of her 20 year tryst with business journalism, Shereen has been the recipient of the 'Best Business Talk Show' award at the News Television awards for two years consecutively. She also won the 'FICCI Woman of the Year' award for her contribution to the Media in 2005, and was named a 'Young Global Leader' by the World Economic Forum. She also won the ‘Best Business Anchor Award’ at the ‘News Television Awards’ in 2013 and the Best English News Anchor Award in 2018. Shereen was named in IMPACT's '50 Most Influential Women In Indian Media, Marketing & Advertising List, for 2018, 2019 and yet again for 2020. She has won the News Television Editor-in-Chief of the year in the English category and the Best Anchor, English in the prestigious ENBA 2019 Awards. More recently, Shereen won The Best Business News Anchor (English) at the News Television Awards 2020.
Mr.Sibin Chas a Master’s of Science in Agriculture (Horticulture) and a Master’s of Arts in Public Administration.He then joined the lndian Administrative Service in Punjab Cadre in Year 2005 and has served the state in various capacities since then.
He has been DC Pathankot, Director Rural Development and Panchayat and ex-Officio Special Secretary RDP, Executive Director Punjab State Backward Class Financial Corporation, Managing Director of Punjab Agro Industries Corporation; Punjab Agro Foodgrains Corporation; Punjab Agri Export Corporation; Punjab Agro Juices Limited besides having additional Charge of Special Secretary Horticulture; Director Horticulture; Mission Director Food Processing Industries, Managing Director Punjab Small Industries & Exports Corporation Ltd.
He is presently serving asDirector Industries & Commerce, Punjab, and State Startup Nodal Officer. He is currently involved in growth and promotion of industries and startups in the State of Punjab.
Mr. Sibin C has been committed to bringing reforms to his departments to make them more efficientand responsive tothe contemporary needs. He has introduced and ensured the success of numerous initiativesduring hisassignments in the district administration.
Lakshman Namal Rajapaksa (born 10 April 1986) is an Attorney at Law and Sri Lankan politician, currently serving as the Minister (elect) for Sports and Youth Affairs in Sri Lanka. A member of the Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna Political Party, his main constituency remains the Hambantota District, where he was able to secure the highest preferential votes at three consecutive Elections (2010, 2015, 2020). He is the founder of the Tharunyata Hetak initiative, established in 2005, that aims to empower rural youth in Sri Lanka through grassroot level development projects, focused on providing economic independence through career and skills development.
Post the 2020 Elections, Namal has served as Minister (elect) for Sports and Youth Affairs, restructuring and bringing to date the configuration of the ministry, including through the establishment of special committees consisting of field experts, sportspeople, and advocates, resulting in a more democratic, inclusive and people centric structure to the Ministry’s work.
He continues to be a strong advocate of multilateral cooperation and exchange, and strongly believes in enabling a culture of global respect, cooperation and understanding that there is no one model of development. His career in sports during his youth coupled with his political career has earned him global recognition as an advocate for peace-through-sports.
Ms. Warangkhana Phanwanich is a veterinarian by profession. She established PETNAEER, a fully pet health solution provider that uses R&D on the innovation platform. Seeing the plight of pets suffering from the illness or disability, it inspired her to continue her Master’s degree in Biomedical Engineering. She has created the innovative pet products and medical devices platform to provide a better quality of life to the animals, e.g., prosthetic leg, wheelchair, rehabilitation suit, underwater treadmill, etc. The platform has already acquired patentsand has its own internal R&D setup and has won 7 awards from international innovation fair. This year they plan to scale-up human market experience named “AquaTrek”, a smart hydrotherapy solution.
Prof. V. Ramgopal Rao is currently the Director, IIT Delhi. Before joining IIT Delhi as the Director in April 2016, Dr. Rao served as a P. K. Kelkar Chair Professor for nanotechnology in the Department of Electrical Engineering and as the Chief Investigator for the Centre of Excellence in nano electronics project at IIT Bombay. Dr. Rao has over 450 research publications in the area of nano-scale devices & nano electronics and is an inventor on 45 patents and patent applications, which include 17 issued US patents. Twelve of his patents have been licensed to industries for commercialization. Prof. Rao is a co-founder of two deep technology startups at IIT Bombay (Nanosniff & Soilsens) which are developing products of relevance to the society. Dr. Rao is a Fellow of IEEE, a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering, the Indian Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Sciences, and the Indian National Science Academy.
Prof. Rao's work is recognized with many awards and honors in the country and abroad. He is a recipient of the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize in Engineering Sciences in 2005 and the Infosys Prize in 2013. Dr. Rao also received the Swarnajayanti Fellowship award from the Department of Science & Technology, IBM Faculty award, Best Research award from the Intel Asia Academic Forum, Techno Mentor award from the Indian Semiconductor Association, DAE-SRC Outstanding Research Investigator award, NASI-Reliance Platinum Jubilee award, J.C. Bose National Fellowship, Prof. C.N.R.Rao National Nanoscience award, VASVIK Award and the Excellence in Research Award from IIT Bombay.
Mr Agarwal, is a graduate in Bachelor’s of Commerce. Further he trained as a Chartered Accountant by profession. He then joined the lndian Administrative Service in Punjab Cadre in Year 2003 and has served the state in various capacities since then. He has been Chairman of PPCB, DC Ludhiana & Amritsar, Excise and Taxation Commissioner, Director IT, Registrar Co-operative Societies, Punjab, and MD, PSIEC.
He is presently serving as Excise Commissioner, Punjab, Chief Executive Officer, Punjab Bureau of Investment Promotion and Managing Director, Punjab Infotech. He is currently involved in growth and promotion of industries in the State of Punjab. Mr. Agarwal has been committed to bringing reforms to his departments to make them more efficient and responsive to the contemporary needs. He has introduced and ensured the success of numerous citizen centric initiatives during his assignments in the district administration especially through maintaining law and order at these locations. He has also introduced the grievance redressal system for investors in Punjab and has successfully brought marquee brands like CN Spain, Happy Forgings etc. to the state.
Mr. Manoj Kumar Das belongs to the 1990 batch of the Indian Administrative Service, the premier Civil Service of India. A diplomat with over thirty years of experience, he has worked on important assignments in the Government of India and the Government of Gujarat. He is currently serving as the Additional Chief Secretary to the Hon’ble Chief Minister of Gujarat and Additional Chief Secretary, Industries and Mines Department, Government of Gujarat. He has played an instrumental role in the formulation of recently published Gujarat Industrial Policy 2020 which has gained momentum nationally and internationally.
Formerly, he has served as the Principal Secretary, Food, Civil Supplies and Consumer Affairs Department, Government of Gujarat where he implemented one of India’s most revolutionary assignment of digitization and automation of all Fair Price Shops (FPS) in the State and Aadhaar (Unique Identification number) linked cashless payment system. He was also appointed as the Director, J&K Affairs, Home Ministry, Government of India. Mr. Das has received several awards including award from the Governor for best performance in Rural Development in 1999. He has received 8 National Awards for best performance in various sectors while working as Municipal Commissioner in Surat and Vadodara (cities in Gujarat).
Dr. Marlar Myo Nyunt is Deputy Director General of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration under the Ministry of Investment and Foreign Economic Relations, Myanmar. She served as lecturer in Yangon Institute Economics from 1994 to 2012. In 2012, she was transferred from Ministry of Education to Ministry of National Planning and Economic Development. She received Bachelor’s of Economics from Yangon Institute Economics in 1991. She got Master of Economics from Yangon Institute Economics in 1998. She pursued Master of Arts in International Development from the International University of Japan in 2004. She received Ph.D (Economics) from Yangon Institute Economics in 2013. Currently, she serves as Deputy Director General at Directorate of Investment and Company Administration, and she has been participating in many international seminars and meetings related to investment, and ASEAN affairs.
Fahim Ahmed is the President & Chief Financial Officer (CFO) at Pathao, the largest digital platform for ride-sharing, food delivery and e-commerce logistics in Bangladesh and Nepal. Since joining Pathao in early 2018, Fahim has led the development and execution of the Company’s capital-raising and deployment strategy.Fahim is a seasoned executive with over 17 years of experience in finance, private equity, venture capital, investment banking and operations in Bangladesh, South Asia, and the US.
Prior to Pathao, he served as a Managing Director at Small Enterprise Assistance Funds (SEAF), a global impact investment firm that provides capital to growing businesses in frontier markets. At SEAF, he led several successful investments and exits in the technology, business services, renewable energy, and transportation sectors in Bangladesh and in neighboring markets in South Asia.Previously, Fahim had also worked as a private equity investor at Royal Bank of Scotland, and at American Securities, a leading middle-market private equity firm based in New York. He began his career in finance as an investment banker in the Tech Media & Telecom (TMT) department at Goldman, Sachs & Co in NY.
Arif Khan is the CEO & Managing Director of IDLC with over 26 years of strategy, capital markets, investments, and regulatory experience. Prior to joining IDLC in 2016 as CEO, he was a commissioner at Bangladesh Securities and Exchange Commission (BSEC). He has over 15 years of experience at IDLC in various roles, including CFO, oversight of capital market operations, leading IDLC’s SME and personal finance operations, among others.
H.E. Lyonpo Loknath Sharma is currently the Minister of Economic Affairs, Royal Government of Bhutan. He received a Bachelor’s of Science degree from University of Delhi, India and a Master’s of Arts in Economics degree from University of Allahabad, India. He completed his Advance Diploma in Community Services from the Canberra Institute of Technology, Australia.
Rahat Ahmed is the Founding Partner & CEO of Anchorless Bangladesh. He started covering Bangladesh in 2004 for Prince Street Capital, where he led investments in the Dhaka Stock Exchange. In 2016, he helped seed Pathao, a Bangladeshi ride-sharing/logistics startup that has raised over US$35 million. He was also the primary strategist at DKMS US, the American division of the world's largest bone marrow donor center where he helped increase the transplant conversion ratios for blood cancer patients in the United States. He serves as the Senior Advisor at Startups Next at the startup incubator for North South University, the country’s leading private university& is the Co-Founder of B.deshi, an organization that connects Bangladeshi youths with successful professionals of diaspora.
Sonam Wangchuk was born in the trans-Himalayan region of Ladakh in J&K, India. Through a Mechanical Engineer by education, he has been mostly working in the field of education reform for more than 27 years. In 1988, just after he finished his engineering studies, he founded SECMOL (Students’ Educational and Cultural Movement of Ladakh) www.secmol.org, which aims to bring reforms in the government school system in Ladakh. In 1994 he was instrumental in the launch of Operation New Hope, a triangular collaboration of the government, village communities and the civil society to bring reforms in the government schools system. The programme involved formation of Village Education Committees to take ownership of state schools, training of teachers in child friendly ways and re-writing and publishing localised textbooks for Ladakh. As a result, the pass percentage at 10th grade (matriculation) rose from the dismal 5% to 55% in seven years and 75% these days. For students who still failed in their state exams he founded the SECMOL Alternative School Campus near Leh, a special school where the admission criteria is failure in exams and not grades. However, with the supportive and creative environment at the school, the so-called failures have excelled in their chosen fields and risen to international acclaim as entrepreneurs, film makers, politicians, teachers and so on.
Sonam Wangchuk has been granted several awards and titles, such as; the prestigious Ramon Magsaysay Award 2018, the GQ Men Of The Year Award for Social Entrepreneur of the Year 2017 in India, the Rolex Award for Enterprise 2016 in Hollywood USA, the Terra Award 2016 for World’s best Earth Buildings in Lyon France, the UNESCO Chair for Earth Architecture for India in 2014,‘Real Heroes’ Award by CNN IBN Channel in 2008, ‘Green Teacher’ Award by Sanctuary Asia Magazine in 2005, Ashoka Fellowship by Ashoka: Innovators for the Public in 2002, ‘Man of the Year’ by The Week magazine in India in 2001 and the Governors Medal by the J&K State Government in 1996.
Jay Parote Denskoon is a CEO and Co-Founder of a Thai Startup called Zipevent, an all-in-one event management platform for offline and online events. Zipevent was awarded with "Rising Star Award" from Krungsri Rise Accelerator program and represented Thailand to join SIIF (Seoul International Invention Fair) with a Silver-prize award.
Dr. Wunna Aung is the Director of the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) under the Ministry of Investment and Foreign Economic Relations (MIFER), Myanmar. He got the Degrees for the Bachelor of Engineering and Master of Engineering in Mechanical 2002 and 2008 respectively, followed by Ph.D (Mechatronics) in 2011. He took an educational service from 2002 to 2015 as an Assistant Lecturer to Associate Professor in the technological universities in Myanmar. After that he was transferred to the Directorate of Investment and Company Administration (DICA) as a Deputy Director in 2015 and promoted to the current position, Director of the DICA in 2018. He has attended trainings in various institutions and participated in the international seminars and meetings related to investment. He has also led in bound and outbound investment promotion activities.
Tina Jabeen is appointed as the first Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Startup Bangladesh Limited, ICT Division – the first and only venture capital fund sponsored by the Government of Bangladesh. Prior to her appointment, Ms. Jabeen has served as the Investment Advisor to Startup Bangladesh – iDEA Project, ICT Division since 2016 where she spearheaded major strategy and technical initiatives of the project. Formerly a Senior Director for PwC USA and Director of Finance and Tax for Horsley Bridge Partners. Ms. Jabeen brings decades of executive experience having held senior positions in such prestigious global firms in the areas of financial due diligence, valuations, equity structures, cross border taxations and venture capital governance models.
Sridhar Vembu is the Founder and CEO of Zoho Corporation (formerly AdventNet Inc), who are the makers of online Zoho Office Suite along with several business applications. He is more famously known for building a multi-million-dollar Zoho Corporation from scratch and without taking any external funding, that today competes directly with giants like Microsoft, Google, Oracle and Salesforce.com, and giving them a run for their money. The Smartest Unknown Indian Entrepreneur who has a massive fan-following in the start-up industry, mainly for being the man who turned down venture capital money.
After completing his PhD, Sridhar joined Qualcomm in San Diego in 1994. During this stint of roughly 2 years, being an Electrical Engineer, he used to work on wireless communication including aspects like CDMA, power control and some very detailed issues on wireless communications. During his days with Princeton, he had gained keen interest about Political Science and Economics, which had led to reading of several books and studying about the success of markets like Japan, Singapore, and Taiwan, and how they had managed to grow so well. He had understood that Socialism was our problem in India and really wanted to fix the situation. So, when two years later, his brother Kumar brought up the thought, he decided to join his brother, left his job and headed back to their home country, in attempts to solve the nation’s pain-points with the help of technology.
Nivruti Rai is Vice President in the Data Platforms Group (DPG) and Country Head Intel India at Intel Corporation. Based in Bengaluru, she provides overall engineering and business unit leadership and leads operations for the site, driving innovation, cross-group efficiencies and execution for engineering teams delivering global products and roadmaps. She also leads engagements with national and local governments and policymakers, as well as collaboration with ecosystem players to enable innovation and entrepreneurship.Nivruti is also responsible for DPG India site engineering and execution, with a focus on delivering platforms aligned with the India team’s charter. In addition, she supports DPG and the Intel Sales and Marketing Group in strengthening customer, ecosystem, academic and research lab relationships in India.
She joined Intel in 1995 and subsequently worked in the CPU development organization in Oregon. She led the effort to conserve chip power in microprocessors by selectively using high-performance devices and pioneered the use of error-correcting codes to reduce operating voltages and memories, becoming a principal engineer in 2003. She moved to India in 2005 to manage R&D of mobile platform technologies used for handheld and laptop computers. In 2013, her team was awarded an Intel Achievement Award for contributing to the development of the Minute Intel® architecture core. In her previous role as vice president in Intel’s Platform Engineering Group, she led teams across the United States, Costa Rica, Israel, Malaysia, and India charged with developing innovative analog and mixed-signal intellectual property (IP) blocks and IP subsystems for Intel’s system-on-chip products. She also managed the emerging technologies group in India developing machine learning and computer vision soft IP.
Mr. Rungsun Promprasith has 15 years of experience on software development with many types of system platforms. Mr. Promprasith is attributed with high analytical skills along with good team management skills with 10 years’ experience as a CEO. Mr. Promprasith launched QueueQ in 2015. He has been awarded with several accolades such as the Prime Minister’s Digital Awards 2019 – Digital StartUp of the Year, 7 Innovation awards 2019 – Social Service Sector and the National Innovation Awards 2019 – The best Innovation Organization among many others. Mr. Promprasith is responsible for providing many mobile applications for banks, insurance companies and large corporations in Thailand. He has also developed S1000s product (CMS for web & mobile) which was implemented on ThaiPBS, DTAC, Thaiday etc. and developed several tools such as Shopping directory, Ecard service, Ads Management etc. -- for CPN (Central Pattana) networks – Central Plaza, Central World, Central Festival etc.
Bijon Islam is the Co-Founder and CEO of LightCastle Partners, an organization that focuses on creating data-driven opportunities for growth and impact for development partners, corporates, SMEs, and startups. Over the last five years, Bijon has led the company in engagements across 140+ businesses/development partners, 500+ SMEs/Startups and 25+ accelerator programs in multiple industries. LightCastle Partners runs an impact investment catalyst program in Bangladesh called Biniyog Briddhi backed by Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation. Lastly, Light Castle is a core member of the Bangladesh Start Consortium which works closely with Government of Bangladesh (GoB)’s ICT Ministry & Education Ministry and has been a core member to drive post-pandemic COVID-19 response strategy for GoB.
Hailing from the country’s east, the 56-year-old founder of the political party that is the government today, has always heeded to his nation’s call at numerous occasions – critical and historic. The journey began with his enlisting as a Military Officer with the Royal Bhutan Army soon after the graduation. Thereon, he joined the most coveted professional branch of the government, the Bhutanese Civil Service, where he served for more than a decade before he resigned to participate in Bhutan’s historic democratic elections. His most significant contribution, however, was in founding and leading the third political party, which today, has gone on to forming the present government.
Besides helping realise the constitutional provision of the requirement of more political parties in a multi-party democracy, he understood the Bhutanese people’s wish for more choice of parties, besides the early two. It is with the same importance he attaches to strengthening Bhutan’s democratic process that he assumes the advisory role of the executive member of his party as well as the government today. Recognised for initiating social projects alongside, he also established the first and leading private management training institute. Tenzin Lekphell also launched several private ventures that have enabled creation of employment for numerous Bhutanese youth. He also mentors upcoming startups and new entrepreneurs. Mr. Tenzin has been awarded with Druk Yugyel Medal from His Majesty the King for gallantry following the military service to the nation.
Samad Miraly is an investor. He helped launch and manages Bangladesh’s first formally managed venture capital fund. Before starting the IDLC VC Fund I, Samad had been investing across asset classes, but had a particular interest in investing in innovation. This led to his work in Bangladesh’s startup industry in 2012. He began as an angel investor in 2013 and co-founded Startup Dhaka, an entrepreneurship development company. Under the Startup Dhaka banner, Samad spearheaded the design and operation of the GP Accelerator in partnership with Grameenphone (a Telenor company) - the country’s first startup accelerator. Samad serves on various other boards, including JAAGO Foundation, and he is a Founding Board Member of Bangladesh Angels - the country’s premier angel network.
Working together to open doors for ambitious international startup founders and international talent. The Netherlands Point of Entry is the central government body that helps international talent find their way to the Netherlands. Based on tailor-made advice for international entrepreneurs, advice on governmental procedures and visa, applications for startup visa and facilitator network connections in the startup ecosystem.
Mr. Moon Young Kim has served as KOTRA South Asia Regional Head Office, President from Aug 2019-July 2021-President of RHO and Director General of New Delhi KOTRA Office in charge of planning and moderating of South Asia’s 9 offices of which 6 are in India, as well as Karachi, Dhaka, and Colombo office. During his time at KOTRA, he has served in multiple locations including as DG, KOTRA Ahmedabad Office from Aug 2016-July 2018, as well as office in Thailand, Korea, and New York.
Some of his key publications include: "Global Economy and Role of the MNCs": May 2008, KOTRA, "Analysis on the impact of the Korea US FTA by major industry", Aug., 2007, KOTRA "How Should Korea Approach India's IT Industry?": December 2001, KOTRA "The Ten-year Strategy for the Japanese Market": November 1997, KOTRA "Strategy for the Indian Market": March 1996, KOTRA "Investment Opportunities in South Asia": April 1994, KOTRA "Country Profile, Myanmar": December 1993, KOTRA "Country Profile, India": March 1993, KOTRA.
Dr. Pun-Arj Chairatana (PAC) – the Executive Director of National Innovation Agency (NIA), Thailand – has been recognized as the country’s pioneer in the fields of foresight and innovation management. With a comprehensive education background in Physics, Economics, Innovation Management and Technology Foresight, PAC has engaged with various strategic projects in multi areas, ranges from academia to national policy development. With decades of experience, he has been involved in several international and national research projects from both private and public sectors, for example managing “Trendnovation Southeast”, the horizon scanning project under the Searchlight Network of the Rockefeller Foundation, and designing “social innovation system” and policy for the Thai social economy. Also, he was the Founder and managing director of NOVISCAPE Consulting Group (NCG), the foresight and innovation-specialized company based in Bangkok and involved with various regional scenario buildings and future exercises since the late 1990s.
Recently, as the program leader of STARTUP THAILAND – a national startup promotion platform by the Ministry of Science and Technology (MOST) – he has brought national awareness on startup to the public and established a national level policy to make Thailand as an open area for startup in Asia region.
Shri. Hardeep Singh Puri is the Minister for Civil Aviation, Housing and Urban Affairs, Government of India and Minister of State, Commerce and Industry, Government of India. He is a 1974 batch Indian Foreign Service officer who served as the Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations from 2009 to 2013.
He formerly served as President of the United Nations Security Council and as Chairman of United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee, Vice President of International Peace Institute and Secretary-General of Independent Commission on Multilateralism in New York. He earned Bachelor of Arts in History and Master of Arts in History from Hindu College, University of Delhi. He worked as a lecturer of History at St. Stephen's College, Delhi. Shri Puri has also served as Joint Secretary to the Government of India in Ministry of External Affairs from 1994 to 1997 and from 1999 to 2002. He has also served as Joint Secretary to the Government of India in Ministry of Defence from 1997 to 1999. He later served as Secretary to the Government of India (Economic Relations) in Ministry of External Affairs from 2009 to 2013.
Between 1988 and 1991, he was the Coordinator of the UNDP/UNCTAD Multilateral Trade Negotiations Project to help Developing Countries in the Uruguay Round of Multilateral Trade Negotiations. He also served as the Chairman of the United Nations Security Council Counter-Terrorism Committee from January 2011 to February 2013, and as President of the United Nations Security Council in August 2011 and November 2012. Shri Puri has also authored several books, research papers and publications namely the Perilous Interventions: The Security Council and the Politics of Chaos and the Delusional Politics: Back to The Future.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak was born on 17 May 1980 in Singra Upazila under Natore district. Late Faiz Uddin Ahmed, his father, was an active political activist being inspired by the ideology of Bangab and hu Sheikh Mujibur Rahman. Beinga General Secretary of the Singra Upazil a unit of Bangladesh Awami League, he played an important role as one of the organizers of the great war of independence in the Chalan Beel area.
Zunaid Ahmed Palak passed the SSC examination from the Singra Damdama Pilot School and College in1995 securing first division with star marks and letter marks in five papers and HSC examination from the Rajshahi Govt. College in 1997 securing first division with letter marks in two papers. He obtained a Bachelor's degree, a Master's degree in Political Science and LLB from the National University of Bangladesh. Later on, he successfuly completed a Capstone Course from the National Defense College (NDC) in Dhaka. Then, he started his career as a professional lawyer in the Natore District Judge's Court and now he is a member of the Bangladesh Supreme Court Bar Association.
At the end of his academic career, he joined Bangladesh Awami League, a party that led the nation for its independence. He got the nomination from Bangladesh Awami League for the national election held in 2008 and was elected by a huge margin at the age of 28 years. He was the youngest Member of the Parliament (MP) in the ninth parliament. He played an active role as a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on ICT Ministry and he was also a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Private Members' Bill during the ninth parliament. Besides, he was a Co- convener of the All- Party Parliamentary Committee on Climate Change. He became a member of the Executive Committee of the central Awami League in 2012 at the age of 32 years. In the national election held on 5 January 2014, he contested in a participatory election and elected Member of Parliament for a second consecutive term with overwhelming support from the people of his constituency. Honorable Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina included him in her Cabinet, and he was sworn in as a Minister of State on 12 January 2014 at the age of 33 years and 8 months. He Is the youngest member of the Cabinet. In the national election held on 20 December 2018 , he contested in a participatory election for 3rd time and elected as Member of Parliament once again. Hon'ble Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina re-appointed him as the State Minister in her cabinet for ICT Division. He was nominated as “Young Global Leader” in 2016 by the World Economic Forum and World's 100 Most Influential People in Digital Government 2018 by Apolitical.
Priyanka Chopra Jonas is a multi-faceted talent, who is one of the most recognized personalities in the world. She is the recipient of numerous awards as an actor and producer, with more than sixty international and Hollywood films to her credit. She made history as the first Indian-born actor to lead an American network TV series when she starred in the ABC dramatic series Quantico, winning two People’s Choice awards for her work.
The Padma Shri, one of India’s highest civilian honors, was conferred on her in 2016. She was featured on the cover of Time magazine’s “Time 100” issue, in which she was named one of the “Most Influential People” in the world and has been recognized as one of Forbes “Most Powerful Women.” She is a global UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, and in December 2019 received the prestigious Danny Kaye Humanitarian award. She is also a Global Citizen ambassador and is involved in a number of efforts to protect children’s rights and to promote the education of girls around the world. including her namesake charity, The Priyanka Chopra Foundation for Health and Education. In addition to these roles, Chopra has dedicated herself to fighting for inclusion and diversity for all and strongly believes in working to create a more inclusive world where diversity is celebrated.
Dr. Shekhar C. Mande is a Structural and Computational Biologist. He did his M.Sc. in Physics from University of Nagpur. He holds Doctor of philosophy in Molecular Biophysics, from the Indian Institute of Science. Following his PhD, he joined Prof. Wim G. J. Hol as Post-Doctoral Fellow at Rijks universite it Groningen in the Netherlands. Dr. Mande currently serves as the Director General of the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR)-cum- Secretary, Department of Scientific and Industrial Research (DSIR), Govt of India. He was awarded in 2005 the Shanti Swarup Bhatnagar Prize for Science and Technology, the highest science award in India, in the Biological sciences category.
He served on many advisory committees before moving to Delhi in 2018, including task forces of the Department of Biotechnology and Department of Science and Technology, Govt of India. He also served as a member of the management council of the Tata Institute for Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai as a representative of the Maharashtra State Government. He is a member of the Governing Body of the Indo French Centre for Promotion of Advanced Research (CEFIPRA) and served as a member of the Research Council of the Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology, Delhi.
Sachindra Samararatne is the Program Head in Information and Communication Technology Agency (ICTA) of Sri Lanka. Mr. Samararatne drives the Industry Development Program of ICTA. He contributes as a member of National level committees creating a growth environment for innovation, entrepreneurship and exports and engages with youth and startups through mentoring and judging national pitching competitions. He also evangelizes the appropriate usage of digital and responsible disruption.
Ms. Mu Mu Aye is currently the Deputy Director of SME’s Department under Ministry of Industry. In her present role she is responsible for the negotiation, communication, cooperation, and coordination with international and local organizations in order to support and promote the capacity building of SMEs, to help them get market access and technology assistance and to implement the development programme of SMEs and transferring and distributing economic advisory to SMEs. She was responsible for laying out the plan for the development of SMEs programme for the Ministry. Moreover, she not only organized these workshops, trainings and seminars for SMEs development but also shared her knowledge that she acquired from her tenure in Foreign Ministries and was responsible for cooperating with International organizations for SMEs cluster development programme and to build up the capacity building programme for youth and women.
Mr. Kazuya Nakajo is the Executive Vice-President of Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO). He joined JETRO in April 1988, thereafter he was made the Director of JETRO Nairobi and the Assistant Divisional Director of Planning and Coordination Department, H.Q. In June 2000 he became the Chief Deputy Director of Investment Promotion Department and in 2003 he was the Director of Invest Japan Business Support Center. Thereafter he took the positions as Executive Director of JETRO Chicago, Director of Invest Japan Division, Invest Japan Department, Director of External Relations Division, Institute of Developing Economies, Director of Administrative Affairs Division, Administrative Affairs Department, Deputy Director General of Administrative Affairs Department, and the Director-General of Invest Japan Department in the next few years. Mr. Nakajo has graduated from Keio University, School of Literature (B. A. History).
Focused on economic empowerment at scale, Ms. Siffat Sarwar co-founded ShopUp, Bangladesh's leading full stack B2B platform for micro entrepreneurs. The platform enables them by providing a one stop solution for services starting from sourcing, to logistics and credit. ShopUp is currently used by over 500,000 micro entrepreneurs. Till date, ShopUp has raised 20+ Million USD from Flourish Venture of Omidyar Network, Sequoia Capital, UKAID and Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation in the form of capital and grants. Ms. Sarwar is well acquainted with the financial sector of Bangladeshand is passionate about driving the economy forward by solving information asymmetry. Prior to co-founding ShopUp, she served as a Credit Analyst at Standard Chartered Bank, and at the treasury department of Airtel Bangladesh Limited.
Mr. Teera Kanokkanjanarat is a Co-founder and developerand maintains the e-pharmacy platform for pharmacists and drugstores. Arincare is currently the largest drugstore chain with more than 2,000 users countrywide. Previously, he was a lecturer teaching MBA on Digital Asset Management and Strategy at UTCC. He has also been a host for SME programmes and has written about the same. He has won multiple awards in the area of Technology.
Dr. Nge Lay Khin is a Deputy General Manager of the office of the Central Transformation Unit, the Ministry of Planning, Finance and Industry. She studied at the Mandalay Technological University and got Bachelor’sand Master’s in Civil Engineering in 2003 and 2006 respectively. She got her Ph.D (Civil) from the Yangon Technological University in 2010. She worked at the Myanmar Pharmaceutical Industrial Enterprise from 2005 to 2019. From 2019 up to now, she has worked at the Office of the Central Transformation Unit.She has experience in the management of pharmaceutical factories projects, management of construction works and the industrial development field. She served as a Secretary of the Technical Committee of Myanmar Pharmaceutical Industrial Enterprise from 2010 to 2016. She participated in developing Myanmar Industrial Development Strategy (2017) as a Working Group Member.At present she is participating in reviewing the existing law, rules, and policies regarding industrial development and in developing the Myanmar National Innovation Policy.