For­tis CEO quits ahead of board makeover

Mint ST - - PLAIN FACTS -

Amid the on­go­ing tus­sle be­tween the govern­ment and the Re­serve Bank of In­dia (RBI), for­mer Niti Aayog vice chair­man Arvind Pana­gariya has sug­gested that the two sides must even­tu­ally ‘com­pro­mise’ and ‘come to­gether in na­tional in­ter­est’.

While the RBI is legally less in­de­pen­dent in In­dia than the Fed­eral Re­serve in the United States, ef­fec­tively it has en­joyed the same in­de­pen­dence as the US reg­u­la­tor, the noted econ­o­mist said in an in­ter­view to “Even when there are dif­fer­ences be­tween the two sides, they must even­tu­ally com­pro­mise and come to­gether in na­tional in­ter­est,” he added. way of pref­er­en­tial al­lot­ment for a 31.1% stake, valu­ing the cash-strapped firm at ₹8,880 crore.

The money in­fused through the deal is ex­pected to meet For­tis’s im­me­di­ate and longterm liq­uid­ity re­quire­ments, in­clud­ing ac­quir­ing as­sets from Sin­ga­pore-based Reli­gare Health Trust (RHT) and pro­vid­ing an exit to pri­vate eq­uity in­vestors in SRL Di­ag­nos­tics, For­tis’s di­ag­nos­tic arm. “Ma­jor­ity of the amount is go­ing to RHT in re­la­tion to pro­posed dis­posal of the en­tire port­fo­lio of RHT,” said the sec­ond per­son on con­di­tion of anonymity.

Doc­tors work­ing at For­tis Health­care were in­formed about Singh’s res­ig­na­tion in a con­fer­ence call on Thurs­day evening. Singh said the chal­lenges at the com­pany over the past cou­ple of years had not al­lowed him to spend time with his fam­ily. “I be­lieve that the right time for me to make this tran­si­tion is now. Af­ter two very chal­leng­ing years, the com­pany is now on a sta­ble plat­form and can look for­ward to the fu­ture with op­ti­mism,” he said a state­ment.

“I am very pleased that busi­ness re­cov­ery is well un­der way with solid im­prove­ment demon­strated dur­ing Q2 and with Oc­to­ber re­sults re­flect­ing the best per­for­mance we have had in the past 12 months. So, with the tur­bu­lence be­hind us, the busi­ness once again look­ing up, and with IHH poised to take over the reins at For­tis as a ma­jor­ity share­holder in the com­ing weeks, the time for me to tran­si­tion is now,” he said in the state­ment.

The For­tis board has ac­cepted his res­ig­na­tion, the firm said in a stock ex­change fil­ing. “Singh will con­tinue in his cur­rent ca­pac­ity till For­tis finds his suc­ces­sor.”

Singh is the third top ex­ec­u­tive to re­sign af­ter IHH won the bid­ding war. Chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer Ga­gan­deep Singh Bedi re­signed in Au­gust. Com­pany sec­re­tary Rahul Ran­jan quit in Oc­to­ber.

For­tis Health­care chair­man Ravi Ra­jagopal said: “Bhavdeep has been a pil­lar of strength at For­tis and has stead­fastly led from the front. He has con­sis­tently demon­strated a high level of busi­ness acu­men, an ex­cep­tion­ally strong work ethic and a very strong com­mit­ment to­wards build­ing and sus­tain­ing strong peo­ple re­la­tion­ships built on a strong foun­da­tion of trust. How­ever, his over­whelm­ing in­volve­ment and com­mit­ment to sup­port the com­pany these past years had not al­lowed him suf­fi­cient time with his fam­ily. The com­pany is stand­ing strong to­day be­cause of the lead­er­ship dis­played by Bhavdeep.”

Tesla, Inc. said Robyn Den­holm will re­place Elon Musk as chair of the elec­tric car maker’s board, more than a month af­ter the bil­lion­aire had to step down from the role as part of a set­tle­ment with US reg­u­la­tors.

The ap­point­ment of Den­holm, one of the two women on the car­maker’s nine-mem­ber board, caps months of tur­bu­lence for the com­pany and its stock as in­vestors called for stronger over­sight of Musk, whose er­ratic pub­lic be­hav­iour raised con­cerns about his abil­ity to steer the com­pany through a rocky phase of growth.

The com­pany had un­til Novem­ber 13 to name an in­de­pen­dent board chair­man un­der its agree­ment with the Se­cu­ri­ties and Ex­change Com­mis­sion (SEC), which fol­lowed an in­ves­ti­ga­tion into Musk’s tweets that he had “fund­ing se­cured” for a deal, later scut­tled, to take Tesla pri­vate.

Musk, who has been on Tesla’s board since 2004, quit as chair­man but re­tained his role as chief ex­ec­u­tive of­fi­cer (CEO). His tweets at­tracted scru­tiny from sev­eral other govern­ment agen­cies as well.

Den­holm is cur­rently chief fi­nan­cial of­fi­cer (CFO) at Aus­tralian tele­coms op­er­a­tor Tel­stra Corp. Ltd and has been an in­de­pen­dent di­rec­tor on Tesla’s board since 2014.

She takes over as Tesla’s chair im­me­di­ately and will be tasked with over­see­ing the com­pany as it ramps up pro­duc­tion of its Model 3 sedans, seen cru­cial for the car­maker’s sus­tained prof­itabil­ity.

Den­holm will leave her role as CFO and head of strat­egy at Tel­stra once her six-month no­tice pe­riod with the com­pany is com­plete, Tesla said late on Wed­nes­day.

She was named as Tel­stra’s CFO in July. Tesla said Den­holm, 55, will serve as chair on a full-time ba­sis and will tem­po­rar­ily step down as chair of

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