Billionaire Mukesh Ambani-led Reliance Industries (RIL) has appointed Srikanth Venkatachari as CFO with effect from June 1, succeeding Alok Agarwal, who moves into a new role of senior advisor to the chairman and MD.
RIL’s board, based on the recommendation of the Human Resources Nomination and Remuneration Committee (NRC) has designated Venkatachari as CFO.
The decision was taken at NRC’s meeting held on March 24, RIL
Venkatachari, who has been with RIL for last 14 years, has been the company’s joint CFO since 2011.
He has been sharing responsibilities of the CFO position with Agarwal for the last few years.
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Previously, he had worked with the Citi Group for two decades in forex trading and derivatives, and later as its head of markets.
“Venkatachari has proven his mettle to carry forward the legacy of Alok Agarwal at RIL and help script its future chapters of growth,” RIL said in a statement.
During his tenure at RIL, he was instrumental in stitching together several billion-dollar equity deals with tech giants, and oversaw a chunky Rs 53,000-crore rights issue in a not-so-great market.
A man, who is fascinated about finance, he plays chess when he is not reading about fractal geometry.
In a flight, the 56-year-old prefers to catch up on his reading or listen to Ilayaraja’s compositions.
Agarwal, an alumnus of IIT Kanpur and IIM Ahmedabad, had joined RIL in 1993, later became its CFO in 2005. Prior to RIL, he had worked with Bank of America for 12 years. He had played a key role in RIL’s multifold growth in the last 30 years.
At the time of his joining, RIL had an annual turnover of Rs 4,100 crore with a balance sheet size of Rs 6,100 crore.
In the last 30 years, the company grew nearly 240 times in revenues.
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RIL became the first ever Indian company to cross $100 billion in annual turnover in FY22, while it has already clocked $90 billion turnover in the first nine months of FY23.
Agarwal successfully managed one of India’s largest corporate treasury operations at RIL over the years. This was quite a challenging task with multiple volatile factors to oversee such as equities, debt, foreign currency exposures, crude oil and derivative prices, interest rates and business cycles, among others.