board of directors

bhavana thakur

Bhavna Thakur is an Independent Board Director. Currently, Bhavna Thakur is Head of Capital Markets and Exits for Everstone Capital Advisors. Prior to joining Everstone in 2015, Bhavna had over 17 years of corporate finance, investment banking, M&A, and capital markets experience. Previously, Bhavna worked with Citigroup, Morgan Stanley in Mumbai, and Paul Weiss, Wharton & Garrison LLP, and Davis Polk and Wardwell LLP in London and New York, respectively. 

Bhavna holds a BA LLB (Honors) from National Law School of India, and a Masters in Law from Columbia University.

GEOFF “CHESTER” WOOLLEY

Geoff “Chester” Woolley is a non-executive, nominee Director for Unitus Impact, a social venture capital arm headquartered in San Francisco, California, with regional of offices in India and Cambodia. Geoff has been involved in impact investing and microfinance since 2001. During his time as Unitus Lab’s Capital Markets Chair, he was instrumental in the launch of Unitus Equity Fund, the first commercially focused microfinance equity investment fund, and Unitus Capital, the first investment bank focused on serving microfinance institutions and social enterprises throughout Asia.

Geoff has been active in private equity investing for over 25 years, founding two successful venture funds in the United States and Europe. He pioneered the concept of venture debt and has invested in over 400 companies in his career, including Ciena, Coinstar, Hotmail, and Human Genome Science. He is a Founding Partner of Dominion Ventures, Inc. and European Venture Partners (now called Kreos Capital). In 1998, he assumed an advisory role at Dominion in order to pursue non-profit and other business interests.

Chester holds a B.S. in business management from Brigham Young University and an M.B.A. from the University of Utah.

AGUSTÍN VITÓRICA

Agustin is the Co-Founder and Co-CEO of GAWA Capital, Spain’s leading impact investing rm. Agustin has been instrumental in introducing the impact investing asset class in Spain among private and institutional investors, having involved in this endeavor one of Spain’s leading banks and high caliber board members.

Agustin has more than 15 years of experience in venture capital and private equity investments, having served as the CEO of one of Spain’s largest family of offices. As an investor, he has served as Board Member of 10 companies and 2 foundations. Previously he successfully launched and managed 6 new companies as Managing Director of New Businesses of the Spanish media conglomerate Grupo Zeta. These new companies employed more than 50 people, generated sales of over €30. Agustin started his career as an auditor and consultant for financial institutions at Deloitte.

Agustin earned a degree in Business Administration from Centro Universitario Villanueva (college ascribed to Universidad Complutense de Madrid) and an MBA from the Kellogg School of Management. He has also completed doctoral courses at the University of Manchester. Agustin teaches microfinance at Universidad Autónoma de Madrid and is a founding member of REDIS, Spain’s Impact Investing Network.

RAVI PISHARODY

Ravi Pisharody is a corporate business leader and management professional with over 35 years of experience across diverse industries. He has served as Director on the Board of Tata Motors Ltd, where he was heading the Commercial Vehicles Business Unit.

 At Tata Motors, Ravi was leading the large Commercial Vehicles Business with around Rs. 40,000 Crores revenue; the business footprint included a sizeable overseas presence across over 25 countries. He chaired Joint Ventures including Tata Cummins and Tata-Marcopolo, as well as overseas companies such as Tata Daewoo (Korea) and Tata Motors South Africa, and served on the boards of Indian subsidiaries like Tata Motors Finance Ltd.

Ravi’s previous corporate roles include an 18 year stint with Philips India, where his last role was Vice President, Consumer Electronics; and 8 years in BP/Castrol, where he was a member of the Board of Directors of Castrol India Ltd, and simultaneously Regional Director for Africa, Middle East and India, and subsequently based in Singapore as Head, Global Marketing for the Motorcycles and Scooters category.

Ravi is a graduate engineer from IIT Kharagpur and did his MBA from the Indian Institute of Management (IIM), Calcutta. His expertise is in sales and marketing, as well as Business Strategy. He has also been active in industry bodies – as a member of the Advertising Standards Council of India (ASCI), a Council member and subsequently Chairman of the Audit Bureau of Circulation (ABC), and Vice-President of the Society of Indian Automobile Manufacturers (SIAM) in 2016-17.

RAHIL RANGWALA

Rahil is a non-executive, Nominee Director for the Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. Rahil is the Director of the Family Economic Stability team in India and oversees the foundation’s investments in the financial inclusion and livelihoods sectors. He spent over seven years at Bridgewater Associates, a global macro hedge fund, before making the transition to the development sector.

Rahil has a bachelor’s in computer science from the University of Texas in Austin and a master’s in public administration with a focus on international development from New York University.

SUNIL GULATI

Sunil Gulati is the Chairman of Merisis Advisors, a boutique investment bank and is an Independent Director on the Boards of Varthana Finance, CoinTribe Technologies, and Empays Payment Services. He is a Strategic Advisor to Suryoday Microfinance and to Insense. Sunil is a member of the Investment Committee of Infinity Alternative Advisors, a Charter Member of TiE, Mumbai and a founder member of Fintech Special Interest Group.

Sunil Gulati has three decades of global experience in the banking industry across investment banking, corporate finance, relationship management, risk management and corporate strategy. In the last 15 years, Sunil was a key member of the management teams at RBL Bank, Yes Bank and ING Group at the stage of their rapid growth and transformation and establishment as mainstream players in the Indian Banking industry.

Sunil holds a B.Tech from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi (1982) in Electrical Engineering/Computer Science and is a Gold Medalist from the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (1984).

RANJIT SHAH

Ranjit is Managing Partner and Co-founder of Gaja Capital, a leading mid-market growth capital rm in India. Gaja Capital’s aim is to help create India’s next generation of market leaders and has invested in sectors such as Financial Services, Consumer and Education. Ranjit has over 36 years of India based experience in consulting, – nancial services, CFO and CEO level positions and Private Equity.

Ranjit holds an MBA from The Ross School of Business, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor and a B.Tech. degree in Electrical Engineering from IIT Bombay.

hardika shah

Hardika Shah is the Founder & CEO of Kinara Capital. She also serves on the company board. She has a decade of involvement in the social entrepreneurship field as a strategic mentor to other startups. Prior to launching Kinara Capital, she spent two decades as a management consultant with Accenture, driving billion-dollar client projects across multiple industries around the globe.  

Hardika earned her MBA from Columbia Business School and Haas School of Business. She earned a B.A. in Computer Science from Knox College in Illinois.

Thirunavukkarasu R. (Thiru)

Thiru is the Chief Operating Officer at Kinara Capital. In addition, he also serves on the company board. 

Thiru has two decade of microfinance experience.  Thiru has also served as a consultant to Sir Ratan Tata Trust, Center for Microfinance, and Intellecap primarily in the development of business plans and capacity building for new institutions. 

Thiru earned his Bachelors of Engineering from Tamilnadu Agricultural University, Coimbatore.

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