The march of India born executives in global corporations is the pleasant thing you are seeing these years in distant cultural geographies like the US, UK, Germany etc.

There are many and the ones like Vikram Pandit, Anshu Jain, Satya Nadalla are some of them.

Now, a fresher, Nikesh Arora who travelled to the US with just 100 dollars and two suitcases couple of decades back is going to lead the Japan’s emerging business entity –Softbank.

Mr Arora (47) was the fourth important executive of the internet giant Google after its cofounders before he was snatched by Softbank’s founder Masayoshi Son.

His whopping salary of $135 mn paid by Softbank is one of the highest in the world. It is especially big given the usual moderate corporate emoluments in Japan. Last week, Mr Arora was made the President and Chief Operating Officer of the company by Masayoshi Son.

Though India is lacking globally competitive corporate entities, the India born executives were excelling in leading many MNCs. They were marvelous and built an identity of their own class.

How Vikram Pandit has reconstructed US’s Citi bank in the post crisis period is a fascinating lesson for any banking executive.

Similarly, an isolated Anshu Jain, despite his lack of German language skills, has transformed Deutsche Bank as a global entity.

Arora in Softbank

Now, it is the turn of Arora. He should work in yet another distant cultural geography, where foreigners are least welcome especially as executives.

More than that, the high salary drowned by Arora is not good in front of the Japanese.

Softbank itself is an interesting story. The Japanese company was founded by its current President Masayoshi Son, who is known as Warren Buffet of Japan. His investment in China’s Alibaba has scaled up his company’s image.

Now Softbank lives is specialised investing in fresh ventures and supporting start ups. Its recent venture includes $20bn investment in India’s solar energy sector.

The Japanese company has two evergreen partners in Asia-Alibaba and Taiwanese electronic firm Foxconn.

For Mr Arora, the jump into the Softbank was risky and rewarding. Like Anshu Jain, Mr Arora has to work in a country which is less accommodative of foreign executives. An advantage that usually enjoyed by Indian executives in the US and UK.

But at the same time, there are prospects as well. Softbank is the third largest company in Japan after Toyota and Mitsubishi UFJ Financials.

In immediate future, Softbank will be growing in Asia, especially in China and India. An interesting development is that India-Japan economic engagement is dominated by Softbank’s consistent engagement with India. The company has taken stockholding in Snapdeal.

If Softbank would like to grow, it should grow outside Japan. Here comes the role of a global executive like Nikesh Arora. His ambitious style of functioning and sharp and speedy thoughts will add power to the company. The Financial time reported that Mr Arora is often thinking like a machine gun.

Most importantly, the India born executive is very adaptive, say his close associates.  

Like many other India born,  Nikesh Arora keeps a strong connection with his homeland. He is cricket lover, a Bollywood fan and an ardent follower of Indian food.

Let this Indian born win in the global arena, so that the pride of his breed is kept intact.


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