‘Not money, but challenge; India an option’ | business | Hindustan Times
Today in New Delhi, India
Jul 27, 2017-Thursday
-°C
New Delhi
  • Humidity
    -
  • Wind
    -

‘Not money, but challenge; India an option’

Barely hours after Unilever President (Global Foods, Home and Personal Care) and member of the Unilever Executive Manvinder Singh Banga (Vindi Banga to friends) put in his papers, he was upbeat, enthusiastic and looking forward to his next move. But even after 33 years at a Euro 40 billion (Rs 250,000 crore) company, Banga is not hanging his executive boots yet. Excerpts from an interview:

business Updated: Mar 18, 2010 22:00 IST
Gautam Chikermane

Barely hours after Unilever President (Global Foods, Home and Personal Care) and member of the Unilever Executive Manvinder Singh Banga (Vindi Banga to friends) put in his papers, he was upbeat, enthusiastic and looking forward to his next move. But even after 33 years at a Euro 40 billion (Rs 250,000 crore) company, Banga is not hanging his executive boots yet. Excerpts from an interview:

What prompted your sudden decision to quit?
This is not a sudden decision. Remember, I have been with Unilever for the last 33 years, all of which have been a wonderful experience. Last few years at the Board have been very satisfying and we have managed to completely transform the company.

What is this transformation?
We have over 270 brands in 200 countries. In the last five years we have found a way to manage these brands on a global scale and still keep the local connection intact. We have innovated more and the innovation output has increased. For instance, we are relaunching a shampoo in 55 countries in the next six months. You see very few companies can work like this.

What about the future, where are you headed? Are you still thinking as an executive or as an advisor-consultant?
There are very exciting opportunities in the offing but it would be premature to talk about them. I am at Unilever till the end of May. I would be deciding in the next few weeks. But one thing I want to say is that I would be working full time.

Private equity?
There is a range of options. There are business opportunities, private equity opportunities and other opportunities. But what would be important is where is it that I can leverage my experience.

Will you return to India?
One of the most exciting places today is India. I may be living anywhere but at heart I am an Indian. It is definitely an option.

Looking at the Tata group?
I have had no discussions with the Tata group.

In FMCG or beyond it?
FMCG is a very good training ground. If you are selling scooters, the person would come back to you in say two or four yeas but in this sector it’s a daily thing. This training can be used in anywhere and I am not restricting myself to any industry.

Entrepreneurship? Wealth creation?
Yes, but to create a business, not just money.