US cloud-based service provider Salesforce.com Inc has hired former State Bank of India chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya to head its India operations. Bhattacharya will take over as the Chairman and CEO of Salesforce India on April 20 and will report to Ulrik Nehammer, General Manager APAC.
Gavin Patterson, President and CEO, Salesforce International stated, “India is an important growth market for Salesforce and a world-class innovation and talent hub and Arundhati’s leadership will guide our next phase of growth, customer success and investment in the region.”
The move comes as the software company becomes aggressive in the country, a market that is increasingly adopting digital technologies.
Bhattacharya who previously headed the State Bank of India (SBI), the country's largest lender, is one of India’s most known faces in banking. She was the first woman to lead the more than 200-year-old bank. She retired from SBI in 2017 after spending four decades in various roles. In her role, she also stepped up investments in technology, hiring a chief technology officer from global rival Barclays, to help prepare SBI to compete with smaller and agile tech-focused banks and fintech firms.
Her appointment as a CEO of a technology is in line with the trend of global companies picking more and more Indian talent in leading positions. Bhattacharya is also an independent director on the board of Wipro and last year she was also named as an independent additional director to Reliance Industries Limited. With her appointment, Salesforce is banking on her credible name and the wealth of experience she brings with herself, to expand in India.