Arun M Kumar, a global executive with 40 years of experience spanning multiple sectors including technology, financial services, and government, is joining Celesta Capital as a managing partner.
Celesta Capital is a deep technology venture capital firm that leverages synergies between leading centers of innovation in the US, India, and Israel to create globally impactful enterprises.
Along with the Celesta management team, Kumar will work with large institutional investors, government agencies, and technology leaders while leveraging his wealth of experience, specifically in the US - India corridor. In addition, his mentorship and organisational expertise will provide value to entrepreneurs and executives in the portfolio.
For the last five years, Kumar served as the chairman and CEO of KPMG in India, an organisation consisting of several thousand professionals engaged in providing assurance, tax, and advisory services. KPMG has one of its largest employee bases in India. He was a member of the global board of directors of KPMG, as well as its EMA board.
Kumar previously served in President Obama’s administration as assistant secretary of Commerce for Global Markets and director general of the US and Foreign Commercial Service (USFCS), under the leadership of commerce secretary Penny Pritzker.
As the administration’s lead official to promote US exports, foreign direct investment, and enhanced market access around the world, he led a team of 1,700 professionals in 78 countries and all 50 United States. The Global Markets unit and USFCS saw substantial growth in coverage and impact during his tenure.
Prior to his nomination by President Obama, Kumar was a partner at KPMG LLP in the US and served on the board of the firm. Based in Silicon Valley, he led KPMG’s Management Consulting practice in the West. His areas of practice included performance and finance management, in particular the deployment of analytics capabilities and organizational transformation. He established the cross-border US India Practice in KPMG.
Before joining KPMG, he was a co-founder, CEO, and CFO of three technology companies in Silicon Valley; over the years, Kumar has been a mentor to entrepreneurs in Silicon Valley and India.
“We are delighted to welcome Arun to the Celesta Capital team. His strong connections in both the public and private sector, along with his impeccable credentials, will be invaluable to our portfolio companies during this exciting period of growth for Celesta,” said Sriram Viswanathan, founding managing partner, Celesta Capital.
“I am excited to join the accomplished and forward-looking Celesta team that is passionate about growing globally impactful companies. The combination of Celesta’s uniquely focused expertise in deep technology with the talent and market synergies between the US and India is a powerful value proposition. Given my abiding interest in working with entrepreneurs, I am looking forward to sharing my decades of international experience with Celesta’s portfolio companies as they build and scale their enterprises globally,” added Kumar.
Kumar has had a long association with the US India Business Council and is an advisor to its board of directors alongside other industry and global leaders. Kumar serves as chair of the Wadhwani Institute of Technology and Policy, and he is a member of the Council on Foreign Relations.