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Booming India lures NRI execs home

business Updated: Mar 30, 2008 02:09 IST
Snehal Rebello
Snehal Rebello
Hindustan Times

Non-resident Indian (NRI) executives are preferring cutting chai over Starbucks and never-ending workdays back home to cushy 9-to-5 jobs abroad.

Headhunters say the booming economy has triggered a flood of inquiries from NRIs, looking for high-growth jobs in India. Sectors like infrastructure, retail, capital markets and insurance are sought after. Last year, headhunters estimate, about 4,000 NRIs returned to India. This year, they expect at least double that number.

NRIs are keenly following the India story. “The UK press is full of India,” said Ashwin Assomull (31), the London-based director of Deloitte (M&A strategy), returning to Mumbai after living in London for 26 years.

Assomull isn’t the only one. Chennai-based Head Hunters India (HHI) gets 10 inquiries a day from NRIs who want to return. Says HHI founder Kris Lakshmikanth, “With bad market conditions in the US and a slowdown in Europe, the Indian economy is red hot.”

With companies looking to fill senior positions, most applicants have upto 7 years’ experience overseas. At Ma Foi Management Consultants, the infrastructure segment gets 20 to 25 inquiries a month from NRIs and upto 10 in the consumer retail and services segment, besides 10 to 15 inquiries for IT.

Director of business development for Asia-Pacific at Satyam Computers in Tokyo since 2000, Pravin Buddhev is returning to Bangalore. Specialising in insurance for 10 years, the opening up of the sector helped make up his mind. “Specialised insurance is growing in India,” he said.