HDFC Bank board forms panel to find a successor to Puri

Jagdishan, Zaveri inducted to board

The board of HDFC Bank has formed a six-member panel to find a successor for its managing director Aditya Puri, who will hang up his boots after a 26-year stint at the helm of the largest private sector lender of the country, on October 26, 2020.

The bank has also inducted two members from its senior management team to the board — chief financial officer Sashidhar Jagdishan and Bhavesh Zaveri, the country head for Wholesale Banking Operations and Cash Management Products.

Both have been appointed for a period of three years from November 28, 2019, subject to regulatory approval. The induction of these members is seen as a part of the process of the succession plan.

At present, there are 10 members in the board of HDFC Bank. From the senior management team, apart from Mr. Puri, executive director Kaizad Bharucha is on the board.

The members of the search panel to find a successor for Mr. Puri are Shyamala Gopinath, the chairperson of HDFC Bank, Sanjiv Sachar, MD Ranganath, Sandeep Parekh, Srikanth Nadhamuni and Keki Mistry, the vice-chairman of HDFC Ltd., as the representative from the parent organisation.

Adviser to panel

Mr. Puri will be an adviser to the search committee.

“The search committee, over the next few months, shall evaluate internal and external candidates to ensure smooth transition,” HDFC Bank said in a communication to the stock exchanges. Mr. Puri has been the managing director of HDFC Bank since its inception in 1994, and will complete his present term on October 26, 2020 when he attains the age of 70.

According to Reserve Bank of India rules, the retirement age for private sector bank chief executive officers is 70.

Probable names

Several names, including those of Ajay Banga, president of Mastercard and Piyush Gupta, chief executive officer of DBS Bank, were doing the rounds as Mr. Puri’s successors.

The latest buzz is around Pramit Jhaveri, who recently sought retirement from foreign bank Citi, as a probable successor to Mr. Puri.

Mr. Jhaveri, one of the longest serving India heads of the foreign lender, joined Citi in India as a management associate in 1987 and was named Citi Country Officer for India in 2010, a position he held till March 31, 2019, before Ashu Khullar took over as Citi India CEO.

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