Paresh Sukthankar, HDFC Bank Deputy MD, resigns; to replace Axis Bank CEO Shikha Sharma? Street speculates

By: | Updated: August 10, 2018 6:46 PM

HDFC Bank's Deputy Managing Director Paresh Sukthankar has resigned after having worked with the bank for 24 years since its inception in 1994.

hdfc bank DEPUTY MD PARESH SUKTHANKAR RESIGNSParesh Sukthankar was promoted to the post of Deputy Managing Director from Executive Director in March 2017.

HDFC Bank’s Deputy Managing Director Paresh Sukthankar has resigned after having worked with the bank for 24 years since its inception in 1994. He will step down from his position after 90 days (three months) for now, HDFC Bank said on Friday in statement.

Paresh Sukthankar was promoted to the post of Deputy Managing Director from Executive Director in March 2017. “The Board of the Bank places on record its sincere appreciation for the contribution made by Mr. Sukthankar in  his long association with the Bank and wishes him the very best in his future endeavors,” HDFC Bank said in the filing.

HDFC Bank watchers were all praise for Paresh Sukthankar’s role at India’s largest private sector lender. “He was instrumental in taking up the reins after Aditya Puri,” Sanjeev Bhasin, EVP-Markets, IIFL said to CNBC TV18.

However, he added that HDFC Bank has become too big a bank for one person to have a big impact. “But in the short run it will be a negative because since inception of the bank he’s been the driving force behind the bank,” he said.

“He has definitely contributed as much as Aditya Puri. In the last few years Aditya Puri, because of ailing health, was not as much involved as Paresh Sukthankar. So in the short run it will definitely be a setback at least for the present running of the bank,” Sanjeev Bhasin added.

Another analyst too said it would not impact the bank too much, especially since HDFC Bank is used to seeing some high profile exits. “HDFC Bank is not very new to this. Puri (Aditya Puri, CEO) is still going to be there for the next two years. I don’t think it’s a major setback,” Suresh Ganapathy, Banking Analyst, Macquarie told CNBC TV18.

Vacancy at Axis Bank

HDFC Bank did not tell the reason behind the move, but Paresh Sukthankar’s resignation comes amid the ongoing search for a new CEO at rival Axis Bank. This led some experts to guess if he could be the next boss at Axis Bank when its present CEO Shikha Sharma remits office in December.

“If you read between the lines, the circular clearly says a 90 days’ notice — so you are talking about August, September, October — that’s the three-month notice… And Shikha (Shikha Sharma, CEO, Axis Bank) goes off in December. This exactly ties in with his resignation and perhaps the new guy likely to join Axis Bank. So, that’s my guess,” Suresh Ganapathy said.

Paresh Sukthankar is an alumni of Jamnalal Bajaj Institute (Mumbai) and also holds degree in the Advanced Management Program (AMP) from the prestigious Harvard Business School.

Meanwhile, HDFC Bank reported 18.17 percent increase on-year in the net profit for Q1 of FY19 at Rs 4,601.44 crore. However, the private lender missed the expectations of the analysts due to an increase in provisions which surged 4.5 percent in April-June quarter to Rs 1,629.37 crore. The provisions surged 5.7 percent on a sequential basis in Q1. Compared with Rs 1,343.2 crore in the year-ago period, loan loss provision  was Rs 1,432.2 crore.

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