Friday September 9, 2016

1:15 PM IST

Speaker(s) Name

Multiple Speakers


Vivanta by Taj - Fishermans Cove, Chennai, Kovalam, Tamil Nadu

The Twelfth Annual CFO Strategy Roundtable

 Click Here for Conference Conclusion Papers 

in association with



Friday, July 22, 2016


Registration and Tea

3.00 pm

At the Ballroom, Taj Fisherman’s Cove

Raise a toast to the coming weekend – and commitment to leading growth in volatility – in the company of peers and friends from across the country.

Growth in a Changing Global Paradigm

3.30 pm – 5.00 pm

Adit Jain, Chairman and Editorial Director, IMA India

The India growth story is punctuated by continued volatility. Patches of categorical growth, both sectorally and geographically, are brought low by depressed consumer appetite and most of all, by a hesitant private sector that will not lead growth through investment. The government’s efforts to expand investment have begun to create some impact, but many initiatives will yield only in the long run. The IMA CFO Forum’s benchmarks of acceptable growth are lower than they have ever been, and even then, the stories are so mixed that it is hard to identify a clear growth trajectory. For CFOs, the need to place this in the context of a transforming world and the way forward is even more obfuscated. A year ago, who would have thought Brexit, and with it, a transforming EU, would be reality. And yet, what was unthinkable may become irreversible, bringing sweeping changes on multiple fronts. A slowing China and emerging markets may give India an upper hand by default, but the opportunities we pick, and the challenges we best will define whether, and how fast, we will take advantage of this strangest of all times. Join Adit Jain, among India’s most incisive economic commentators, in the opening session of the Roundtable as he talks through in his characteristic, prescient style, a forecast for the global economy and India within it, given these multiple layers of context.


5.00 pm – 5.30 pm


Business, Success, Happiness: Life’s Sutras

5.30 pm – 7.00 pm

Dr Devdutt Pattanaik, Author, Speaker, Illustrator, Mythologist

The Indian approach to life has always been distinctive, so has our approach to management. Much of this relates to what modern-day analysts would call ‘social context’. In reality, it is much deeper than that, relating to a cultural context, to generations of living by a code of conduct that our ancient texts, both Hindu, Prakrit and Sufi Islamic, illustrated so beautifully in tomes of mythology, passed down over generations. Sometimes, however, we must be reminded of those stories, of those codes of ‘being’. Sometimes, we must go back to our roots to move forward in our respective journeys, as business leaders, as families.

Few in modern day India exemplifies better this ability to distil that wisdom and apply it to modern day approaches to business, to life than Devdutt Pattanaik. Author of over 30 books, many of them bestsellers and a true expert in Hindu mythology, conversations with Devdutt are always enlightening, always renewed, as he builds, again through India’s ancient art of storytelling that we all experience in our families, on the many intersections between modern day life, modern day management, and mythology. Engage with Devdutt as he creates, through illustration and conversation, a familiar, yet so new, framework for decisions in your business, and in your life.

Note: This will be hosted as a joint session, with spouses invited to participate.

The more you celebrate life, the more there is to celebrate

7.30 pm

Cocktails and dinner at the New Beach lawns, hosted by SAP India

An evening by the sea is always pleasant but just after the monsoons; it can be magical, heralding both the power and timelessness of nature. The presence of friends, good food and drink and lilting music. What more could one ask? Not much, we would say, and raise a toast to that!

Saturday, September 10, 2016

When the World Won’t Price Capital

9.00 am – 10.15 am

Richard Martin, Managing Director, IMA Asia

A world of zero interest rates globally, capital in search of yield and India as the world’s fastest growing economy – it all sounds like a dream for businesses in India, and yet, not quite. The volatility in global financial markets is underpinned by fundamental transformation in China (with a massive financial sector implication), turmoil in Europe and a USA whose trade and foreign policy contours will change as a new President takes charge. Cheap global capital is an option that is being exercised in ever-greater measure by CFOs in India, but in return for the ability to undertake and manage a much higher risk paradigm. Domestically, liquidity will continue to remain tight, if not for amount then for rates, as the financial sector remains constrained, and much needed investment-led growth by both the public and private sectors will remain hampered. This duality must be understood in its political and economic context, because both markets and capital drive the world. Richard Martin is amongst Asia’s most incisive researchers of global economic dynamics. His perspective is honed by engagement with over 1,500 of Asia’s leading industrialists. Join Richard as he talks through his forecast of an economic and financial paradigm that could change how you fund your business and de-risk your growth.

Change of Hats

10.15 am – 10.30 am

The CFO as Chief Strategy Officer

10.30 am – 11.30 am

10.30 am – 11.30 am

The CFO’s partnership of the CEO and the Board has always been delicate. In today’s times of greater stringency and the demand of higher effectiveness, that role has become more complex. Today, the CFO must be play ‘sarathi’ to the CEO and to the Board, where the prerogatives of each, whilst meritorious, may not always lend themselves to sustainability. The CEO’s primary remit of growth and the Board’s of governance and oversight, both demand guidance, even when that guidance can be hard to give on account of great volatility, and perhaps even harder to accept by these two crucial partners of the CFO. Most of all, the CFO’s greatest value addition in these times of lower returns on investment as indeed, lower growth in incomes, is to be able to prioritise action items for the organisation at large from multiple competing agendas. How is that best possible? How do you build further on judgment, create ‘proofs’ as masters of mathematics have done, and most of all, build faith, trust and a united commitment to sustainable growth.

Govind Sankaranarayanan has been CFO of Tata Capital, and today, runs a large bulk of the finance giant’s Rs 50,000 crore asset book. His view is one from both sides of the table, as it were, and deeply thought through. Talk through with Govind, how, in today’s context, CFOs must rise to great expectations, for both the great opportunity it presents, and the delicate balance it demands.


11.30 am – 11.50 am

Cognition: The Future is Already Here

11.50 am – 12.15 pm

Santhosh Rao, Distribution Sector Leader, Cognitive Solutions Team – India & South Asia, IBM

“To be able to see around corners”. In today’s times, that is the most fundamental capability that a CFO, in the charge to respond to an ambitious mandate, must possess. Expanding scale and opportunity across businesses in India will face off against continued volatility and rising competition, often from completely unexpected sources. The ability to continually identify – rightly – the kind of change that is around the corner, whether in markets, customer mindsets or indeed, in enabling technologies that could give competitors an edge is then fundamental to the CFO’s role to guide the CEO and the Board, mitigate risk and sight opportunity. How is that possible? Much beyond even predictive analytics is the field of cognitive thinking. Today, the CFO’s tool kit is beginning to encompass technologies that do not just analyse data, but work with humans to interpret the same, serving as virtual advisors with both fact and opinion. IBM’s Santhosh Raoworks in this most exciting of all of IBM’s future-focused businesses, which also gave the medical world the path-breaking Watson. Gain sight of a shining new world of possibilities that will accelerate individual, corporate and even national performance sooner than later.

The Future of the Finance Organisation

12.15 pm – 1.30 pm

V Srinivasa Raghavan, Director Finance, CSC India
Jaimin Bhatt, President and Group CFO, Kotak Mahindra Bank

The CFO’s responsibility triad of governance, control and strategy demands a quality of Finance organisation today that is finely honed on all three counts. Driven by a backbone of smart technologies and fronted by individuals that have as much judgment as technical expertise, Finance organisations today are complex and yet, demand a simplicity and quality of output that enables decision-making, highlights opportunities and mitigates risk. Leading these organisations cannot be easy, and yet, without this quality, the CFO, to paraphrase Isaac Newton, will be unable to see further, as you would not be standing on the shoulders of giants. What is the ideal Finance organisation today and how must you mould your existing team and structure to respond to complex regulation, huge volatility and the need at all times, to partner business, even lead it? What must remain core to CFOs, what can be moved out but in the most effective way, and what must your teams be aided by in order to provide both insight to aid growth and mitigate risk. How do you build your own ‘next in line’ and what do you expect from them? What are the right investments in the Finance organisation itself and how have those priorities changed in light of the demands of today – and tomorrow?

Srinivasa Raghavan is Director Finance of CSC’s massive India operation centred on development and delivery from multiple locations to the global IT major, which has only recently digested the largest ever leveraged buyout of a technology company through its acquisition of HP’s Enterprise Services segment. His ability to create rigorous systems is core to the India unit’s ability to remain key to CSC’s global operations. Jaimin Bhatt leads Finance, among other responsibilities, of one of India’s largest, most ambitious banks. Jaimin’s quality of judgment has been core to the Bank’s impressive rise in the past decade, including through M&A. Think through with Srini and Jaimin, what it will take for your own Finance organisation and team to be the giant that will enable you to deliver to promise, to yourself, to your team and your organisations.


1.30 pm – 2.15 pm

GST: When the Rubber Hits the Road

2.15 pm – 3.30 pm

Amitabha Mukhopadhyay, Group Chief Financial Officer, Thermax
G Sambasivan, Chief Financial Officer, Tata Sky
Sivarajan Kalyanaraman, Partner –Indirect Tax, Price Waterhouse

In the passing of the Constitution Bill 2014 on the GST by the Rajya Sabha, a once probable law, and the single most important reform since India’s independence, is now reality. Expected in the fullness of time to add up to 2% to GDP with rising efficiencies due to the creation of a truly common market and also greater tax coverage, the law will nonetheless, in the near term, create greater complexity for businesses in their everyday operations. Almost everything will change – tax rates and relevant applicability is but one small side of it (exemptions etc included); the manner in which we engage with the tax administration another; and crucially, strategic decisions on operations and corporate structures, a third. How businesses will run in India to maximise the efficiencies that a GST regime is expected to yield will now have to be guided by the CFO community. You are also now responsible for explaining the impact of the GST to your principals, boards as indeed, investors.

Amitabha Mukhopadhyay’s business at Thermax is a perfect example of complex manufacturing, which feeds into, and receives from, complex supply chains. G Sambasivan’s mandate at Tata Sky necessitates the most careful navigation of this landmark change given the sector’s massive distribution of services. Both have thought through categorically, what their respective businesses, and Finance teams, will need to activate to win in a GST-led India. Sivarajan is among India’s leading tax consultants with deep domain knowledge of the law itself. Engage on the most fundamental change that Finance will take charge of in this decade, as our speakers kick off with their take on the ‘how’ of this transformation.

The Privilege of History

3.30 pm – 6.00 pm

A Visit to Mahabalipuram

Globally renowned for its beautiful shore temples (only one of which is now above the sea), Mahabalipuram was the second capital of the Pallava kings of Kanchipuram (700-600 AD) and a bustling sea port hundreds of years earlier, finding reference in the times of Periplus and Ptolemy in the 1st century AD. Mahabalipuram’s monolithic temples – many carved from massive, single boulders (such as Arjuna’s penance) – are a striking example of the quality of architecture and sculpture that India left as a legacy to much of the rest of the world, highlighting both the way of everyday life in these days of yore and superb craftsmanship. Mahabalipuram is still a beautiful town by a lovely beach and its landscape is testimony to the durability and thinking of its rulers more than 2,500 years ago. Visit Mahabalipuram, returning via Dakshinachitra if time permits – a lovely collection of fully restored homes that depict the unique architecture of India’s southern states – and the world-famous crocodile firm.

Individual Excellence: Commitment, Focus, Capability

7.00 pm – 8.30 pm

Viswanathan Anand, Padma Vibhushan, Chess Grandmaster, World Chess Champion

How do you excel, repeatedly, in a most competitive arena, and remain true to your principles, to your will to win, and win right? Vishy Anand’s story is unique – his approach to Chess that anyone aspiring for excellence in any stream can learn from. Engage with this most unique individual from Chennai who has conquered the world, on what it takes to win, to lose, and then win again.

Five-time world Chess champion, India’s first grandmaster, one of only two people to have won the Classical, Rapid and Blitz world championships, Vishy Anand has dominated the world of chess for time spans only the greats have done so far. He is then, one of the world’s greats of Chess himself. What does it take, to build global dominance in a sport that demands mental strength and intellect of a calibre most unique, one that will extract every ounce of physical and mental capability you might possess and then some?

Note: The session will be hosted over cocktails and dinner, partners are invited to join, please be seated by 6.45 pm

Sunday, September 11, 2016

The CFO as Chief Future Officer in a Digitally Disrupted World

9.15 am – 10.30 am

Sanjay Jain, Chief Financial Officer, Future Group
Jatin Dalal, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, Wipro
Manish Dewan, Executive Vice President, Retail Sales and Corporate Cards, SBI Cards

If the past five years are any portent of the future, then disruption is the one word that every CFO will need to remain ahead of. Whilst you are accustomed to the unpredictability in regulation as policies and governments seek to keep pace with the evolution of business, the reality of transformation underway on the consumer and competitor planes is only just hitting home. The fact that this is driven by digitalisation – of commerce, of consumption, of business itself - will drive changes in business models that we can only begin to anticipate. As CFO, the need of the hour is for you to create both strategy and guide operations in light of this new constant. Global businesses, or those facing competition from global quarters, will deal with it even more, as competitive advantages gleaned from a workforces and eco-systems that are naturally digital, led by cognitive thinking and finely honed analytical capabilities will need to be fought against, and then inculcated internally. eCommerce is just one facet. The Internet of Things, machine learning that will enhance productivity manifold and completely online virtual worlds are much larger areas. A digitally savvy CFO will just be better equipped to prepare both the Finance team and the organisation at large to evolve in line with this breakneck transformation.

Jatin Dalal and Sanjay Jain’s charge of Finance in Wipro and Future Group respectively demands an understanding of this transformative capability to remain globally competitive; both face mega disruption, the former perhaps even of business model and the latter in the very least, in the competitor landscape. Manish Dewan heads SBI Cards’ retail sales as well as corporate cards business; his competitor landscape offers both competition from the digital medium and great opportunity, but only if it can be harnessed appropriately. The calls are internal for each of these panelists, as they are for you. Deep-dive into the reality of digital-driven disruption to arrive at the cornerstones of strategy for you as the Chief Future Officer of the company.


10.30 am – 11.00 am

India’s Political and Geo-political Bid: Overarching Context

11.00 am – 12.30 pm

Pramit Pal Chaudhuri, Editor Foreign Affairs, Hindustan Times, Fellow, Asia Society

Politics and policy have become once again, the defining cornerstones of the pace of India’s economic growth. Industry’s competitiveness is high, as illustrated by growing clout in global markets, but as competition, both within and beyond India’s borders intensifies, India’s businesses will need the strongest partnership by the governments of the day, not just as the Centre, but equally, at the level of the states. Not for handouts and incentives, but for a competitive and equipped playing field. Even more, you will need the most categorical focus on trade and foreign policy as India integrates, willy nilly, with the rest of the world. Your understanding of economic and financial linkages is already sound. In today’s world, however, your understanding of political developments as indeed, of security risk, is as important.

Pramit Pal Chaudhuri is amongst India’s most considered minds on politics and foreign affairs one of India’s most senior journalists. His understanding of how the Central government’s priorities, also given key developments in states including expected elections is honed on constant interaction with key individuals, and a sharp ability to assess probable outcomes. Most of all, his view on foreign affairs and trade is very fine. Debate the future of a high-potential India in this most complex of all contexts with Pramit as he talks an outlook for politics and policy at one end, and geo-politics and security at the other, in the closing session of the 2016 Roundtable.

Note: This will be hosted as a joint session with spouses.

Valedictory Luncheon

12.30 pm


As you are aware, IMA adheres strictly to session timings as a mark of courtesy to both speakers and delegates. We would request your attention to this!

Delegates are requested to clear check out formalities late evening of Saturday, the 10th/early morning of Sunday the 11th in order to avoid any last minute rush and spend the concluding day of the Roundtable together, and at relative leisure. It would be advisable to confirm expected billing with the hotel a day prior.

Both evenings are ‘adults only’. Delegates travelling with children are requested to plan needed arrangements.


Smart casual, also for the evenings. Cool clothing is recommended as also, comfortable footwear at all times.

2016-09-09 13:15:00
2016-09-12 01:30:00