2020 Indiaspora Business Leader Quotes

2020 Indiaspora Business Leader Quotes

July 6, 2020

Quotes provided by honorees on the 2020 Indiaspora Business Leaders List


“It’s inspiring to see so many leaders of Indian heritage playing a significant role in business and in society. Our culture and our values are a common starting point. But it’s what we do with the opportunities presented to us that make a difference. And, when we lean into our diverse experiences to deal with challenges like the pandemic or racial injustice, we can have an even greater impact on the lives of those around us.”

— Ajay Banga, President and CEO, MasterCard


“ I am proud of my Indian roots and see many of the teachings of Mahatma Gandhi like seeking the truth, compassion for others and peaceful challenge of the status quo as all being relevant to the success of any meritocracy based organization that evolves in ever uncertain times to overcome obstacles to dominate its space.”

— Anant Bhalla, CEO and President, American Equity Investment


“The 2020 Business Leaders list is testament to the strength of the Indian diaspora, which in many ways, was the product of globalisation. That world order is now under threat, with increasing nationalism one of the downsides coming out of the pandemic. My hope is that in a fractured world, bridges can continue to be built, and our young people have the same opportunities that previous generations had.”

— Piyush Gupta, CEO, DBS 


“I’m amazed to see how far we’ve come in terms of representation in business. There used to be only a handful of us leading corporations,” said Raj Gupta, former CEO of Fortune 300 company Rohm and Haas, and one of the first executives of the Indian diaspora to join the ranks of corporate leadership. “Now that we are reaching prominence, I am eager to see how the next generation leaves its own legacy.”

Raj Gupta, Board Chair for Aptiv, Avantor


“When I think of the Indian Heritage that links so many of the leaders in the world, the first word that comes to mind is culture.  Culture transcends from heritage to how a community or team does things, and when you have a culture in a company that strives to make an impact on the world with passion and energy, it is the most rewarding aspect of business. As such, the ongoing focus across all industries to become more diverse and inclusive is an element of our professional culture that is so important to setting a foundation for the future. It is an honor to be named among leaders of Indian heritage who are helping to shape the way our companies are evolving. I hope that our legacy will be that we’ve helped to create space for the next generation to pursue their dreams and be celebrated as leaders.”

— Samir Kapuria, President, NortonLifeLock


“It’s an honor to join so many outstanding leaders on this year’s Indiaspora Business Leaders list, each of whom is making a meaningful impact within their industry. As a physician and CEO dedicated to creating transformative medicines that improve the lives of people with serious diseases, I believe deeply in the critical role a diverse and inclusive culture plays in us being able to achieve that mission at Vertex. We are committed to developing the next generation of leaders from all backgrounds, and I look forward to some of those names showing up on this list and others like it in the years to come.” 

– Reshma Kewalramani, M.D., CEO and President, Vertex Pharmaceuticals


“It’s outstanding to see a tremendous set of role models from the Indian diaspora and the impact they are having in their arenas. The more notable impact they have is as leaders who role model tolerance and support diversity in all its forms: perspective, attitudes, orientation, identification and appearance. Only when we seek to understand will we be understood and find the compassion needed to stamp out injustice and realise the best version of ourselves.”

— Laxman Narasimhan, CEO, Reckitt Benckiser


“I am grateful for the gift of India’s diverse culture, ‘sanskar,’ or values, and the unconditional love from my parents and family. My family has been fortunate to live the life of global nomads, living across India, South Africa, Thailand, China and the United States. These experiences have shaped my conviction on the goodness of humanity, and the spirit of inclusiveness and cooperation across societies. It is a privilege to be part of this group of leaders as we do our part in helping people live better, healthier lives across the world.” 

— Milind Pant, CEO, Amway


The work of organizations like Indiaspora to amplify what it means to have diversity in leadership is so important,” said LyondellBasell CEO Bob Patel. “It’s the uniqueness of our experiences that have the potential to ignite creativity and drive innovation. I’ve found that our common goals truly serve as the key to unlocking the strength of diversity’s direct contribution to successful business outcomes.”

— Bob Patel, CEO, LyondellBasell 


“I am proud to be part of the Indiaspora in America. When I arrived in the U.S. as a university student, I was awestruck by the wonders of this country, but also found myself longing for the familiar sights and sounds of home. Through the years I have never lost that sense of wonder – realizing there is far more that connects our two cultures than separates us. This deep connection between India and the U.S. makes us natural collaborators. Our working together enhances the global economy, promotes geopolitical stability, and makes each of our nations richer, both literally and figuratively.”

— Punit Renjen, CEO, Deloitte Global


“It is an honor to be part of this distinguished group. Each of us has experienced some aspect of the American Dream, and now more than ever it is important to make the promise of America real for all. We must use the lens of our shared heritage and the power of our collective influence to cultivate cultures of tolerance, build bridges to support underserved communities, and create an environment of true belonging.”

— Ravi Saligram, President and CEO, Newell Brands


“I’m truly humbled by my selection for Indiaspora’s Business Leaders list. The intersection of technology and business has been my passion since my formative years in India and through my professional career in the US. Strong cultural values, a deep grounding in math and science, and a lifelong learning orientation were instilled in me by my parents that I have never forgotten and am thankful for my heritage. In turn, encouraging STEM education has been my ardent interest to pay forward to future generations. I am honored to be recognized in the esteemed company of the other Indiaspora Business Leaders, many of whom represent the ‘who is who’ of corporate leaders of Indian origin.”

— Steve Sanghi, Chairman and CEO, Microchip Technology


The Indian diaspora has been an engine of innovation and business growth globally, as evidenced by this amazing list of leaders. Indeed the common values of this group – family, community, respect, and focus on education – will make the difference in this period of intense global challenges. I am very thankful to the many, both in India and in the US, on whose shoulders we are now standing.”

— Siva Sivaram, President, Western Digital