Westlife Foodworld Ltd, the owner and operator of McDonald’s restaurants in West and South India, today announced the appointment of Saurabh Kalra as the managing director of McDonald’s unit. Kalra was the chief operating officer (COO) of the organisation before this. In this new job profile, he will focus on the overall business strategy and growth opportunities while continuing to remain involved in day-to-day operations.
“Over the years, Saurabh has evolved as an incredible leader and a mentor within the organization. He is a motivated and passionate individual who always seeks to innovate and take on new challenges and we are confident that he will continue to lead Westlife to newer highs with his remarkable vision and strategy,” said Amit Jatia, Vice Chairman, Westlife Foodworld.
With a 20+ years of association with Westlife, Kalra straddled roles across operations, training, real estate, strategy, and development functions, before transitioning from a restaurant-facing role to a CXO role. He had started his career as a management trainee in 2002. His achievements include his role in launching and growing McCafé and the Experience of The Future (EOTF) restaurants in India. Also, he was an integral part of the team that established McDonald’s in South India.
“Saurabh has led several initiatives that have delivered significantly higher profitability and improved operational efficiencies. Saurabh was also an active participant in crafting the 2022 Vision and has been playing a key role in operationalizing Vision 2027, along with Akshay Jatia, Executive Director, Westlife Foodworld,” the company said in a statement. Kalra will replace Smita Jatia who has served as Westlife’s managing director since 2010. She will continue to be an active member of the Westlife board, the company said.
Earlier in January, Westlife had appointed Saurabh Bhudolia as its Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Bhudolia is, in his new role, responsible for overseeing all aspects of financial management and strategy at the company, and is reporting to the company’s executive director Akshay Jatia.