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Uday Kotak wants world to 'hire Indians', says country capable of producing top-class human capital

The Kotak Mahindra Bank CEO rejected the notion that Indian engineers are inferior to the ones in the US.

ET Online|
Last Updated: May 27, 2020, 06.06 PM IST
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Uday ​​​Kotak feels the new world will create new opportunities for India.
Uday Kotak feels the new world will create new opportunities for India.
NEW DELHI: As people learn to navigate their lives around remote working and social distancing in the wake of the novel coronavirus pandemic, many industry leaders believe that the post-Covid world is expected to change drastically.

And Uday Kotak, the CEO of Kotak Mahindra Bank, is optimistic that in a changed world order that will create new opportunities for the country, the Indian talent pool will outshine its international peers. Lauding Indian talent, the top banker through a series of tweets on Sunday afternoon, said that finance analysts, marketers, architects and engineers are a more efficient talent pool that the world should take a second look at. And that the time had come for India to become the 'office' of the world even as a post-Covid China, known as the world's factory that manufactures several things, tries to recover.

The 61-year-old businessman posed a question: "Why should Google pay $200,000 to work-from-home US engineers, when they can cheaply hire Indians here to do the same job on VC?"

While many on his timeline appreciated his views, some were disappointed with his usage of the word 'cheap'. The unhappy followers said that the CEO should have pitched for quality, and not cheap labour, and that India is capable of becoming the next best manufacturing hub.

After a few emotional replies popped up in the thread, the billionaire banker decided to share his two cents based on the feedback in order to calm tempers down, virtually.


He rejected the notion that Indian engineers are inferior to the ones in the US. Citing the example of the Indian-origin tech CEOs like Sundar Pichai of Google and Microsoft's Satya Nadella, he mentioned that India can produce world-class human capital.

Kotak also clarified that by 'cheap' he didn't imply that Indians were underpaid, but the fact that home-grown talent is cost-efficient compared to the rest of the world. "I did not suggest that we underpay Indians by saying 'cheap', only adjusting for purchasing power parity," he wrote.

Earlier this month, the private sector lender had decided on a 10 per cent pay cut for all employees earning above Rs 25 lakh per annum, in a business sustainability move amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The move came in weeks after the top management had voluntarily surrendered 15 per cent of their payments for 2020-21.

The group, and Kotak himself, had earlier announced donations to the PM-CARES Fund and the Maharashtra chief minister's relief fund.

According to the Hurun Global Rich List for 2020, Kotak made it to the list of world's 100 richest self-made banker. The Kotak Mahindra Bank chairman holds the 91st rank in the list with a net worth of Rs 1,04,300 crore ($15 bn).

The War Against Coronavirus: Pichai, Jack Ma, Ambani & Other Top Bosses Show The Way

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Ma’s The Word

25 Mar, 2020
Chinese billionaire Jack Ma (C) showed his benevolent side as he pitched in to help the world fight the novel coronavirus. The founder of e-commerce major, Alibaba, Ma became the most talked about business figure after he said that he would marshall all available resources at his disposal to take on Covid-19. From donating emergency supplies (1.8M masks, 210K test kits, 36K protective suits, plus ventilators & thermometers) to Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Cambodia, Nepal, Pakistan & Sri Lanka in Asia to donating 20,000 test kits, 100,000 masks and 1,000 medical use protective suits in each of the 54 African countries, the 55-year-old proved that he was a good Samaritan whose charity was not mapped by geographical boundaries. And even as the business magnate didn’t have India in his list of beneficiaries, there was much talk in the country about his act of generosity. And what followed were natural questions: who among India’s rich was doing a Jack Ma?And it’s not just one individual, but a bunch of lion-hearted boardroom tycoons who have taken the pledge to help fight the virus that has thrown life off-track, in India and across the world.
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