Ernst & Young has named Kotak Mahindra Bank Executive Vice-Chairman and Managing Director Uday Kotak its ‘world entrepreneur of the year’ for 2014.
For the award, announced in Monaco on Saturday, Kotak was chosen from among 60 finalists from 51 countries, each of whom had been named EY ‘entrepreneur of the year’ in home country.
Kotak, who became the second Indian entrepreneur to win this award -- after Infosys founder N R Narayana Murthy in 2003 -- said: “I accept it with all humility on behalf of 1.2 billion Indians. . . It is recognition of the skills and dedication of the 25,000 employees of Kotak Mahindra Bank, who have worked so hard to build a world-class Indian financial services brand.”
Kotak Capital Management Finance, which was set up in 1985, in 2003 became India’s first non-banking financial company to be converted into a bank.
Today, the Mumbai-headquartered bank has 605 branches across 354 locations.
Just Energy Group Founder & Executive Chair Rebecca MacDonald, who was chairing the judges’ panel, said: “It was an incredibly tough decision but Uday shone through for the way he created, in a challenging and highly regulated environment, a new bank that has a positive impact on the community.
“We were impressed with his strong focus on inclusive growth, providing low-cost services to rural customers. These have a tangible impact on people’s lives.”
Kotak said: “The most important thing about entrepreneurship is having conviction.
“Once you are convinced you have a business model and are committed to superior execution, the rest follows. . . Chase a dream and, even more importantly, execute that dream.”
Maria Pinelli, EY’s global vice-chair (strategic growth markets), said: “Uday is a wonderful example of an entrepreneur who, with a clear vision and strategy, took on established institutions by rewriting the rules of his industry to build something from scratch.”
Image: Uday Kotak; Photograph, courtesy: Business Standard
Disclosure: Kotak Mahindra and associates are significant shareholders in Business Standard Ltd