Ashok Soota, Executive Chairman, Happiest Minds, a next generation IT Services company, is widely recognized as one of the pioneering leaders of the Indian IT industry.
Prior to founding Happiest Minds in August 2011, Ashok led the growth of Wipro’s IT business from US$ 2 million to US$ 500 million run-rate. Subsequently, he was founding Chairman & MD of Mindtree and led it through a very successful IPO. His second entrepreneurial venture, Happiest Minds has already established several benchmarks in the IT Services industry in India and is on course to achieve its goal of being the fastest to achieve US$ 100 million revenue.
Ashok began his career in 1965 with the Shriram Group of Industries in India. In 1978, he became CEO of Shriram Refrigeration, a company which was unprofitable for four straight years. Ashok facilitated a complete turnaround, making it profitable in his very first year and taking it to a position of leadership in each of its product lines.
Ashok is a leader of industry. He was President of Confederation of Indian Industry (CII), India’s largest Industry association and also President of Manufacturers’ Association of Information Technology. He has served on the Prime Minister’s Task Force for IT and on the Advisory Council for the World Intellectual Property Organization, Geneva. For his contributions to India’s IT industry, he has been recognized twice as IT Man of the Year, also as Electronics Man of the Year, and recognized at Infocom 2013, Kolkata, as one of the 12 Gems who helped to build Indian IT Industry. The companies he has led have created about 25,000 jobs during his leadership tenure.
Ashok’s philanthropic contributions are channeled through Ashirvadam, a Trust he has created for Environmental Protection and help for the needy including vocational training, education and medical assistance.
Ashok holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from Roorkee University (now IIT, Roorkee) and an MBA from the Asian Institute of Management, Philippines. He is a Fellow of INAE. Ashok’s hobbies include trekking, the outdoors, yoga, taichi and meditation.
President & CEO, Product Engineering Services (PES)
Joseph has over 19 years of professional experience spanning multiple industries including technology, banking and manufacturing – of which 14 years were spent in software product engineering services working with a wide range of software product companies.
He has developed a deep understanding of delivering software products in a distributed mode and uses this experience to advise and guide customers on their outsourcing strategy.
Prior to Happiest Minds, Joseph held P&L responsibility for a critical business unit (Microsoft Strategic Business Unit) in Mindtree, which contributed 8% of the company’s revenues. In this role, Joseph was responsible for drafting and implementing a strategy that doubled revenues and established Mindtree as the leader in the Cloud and Testing space.
Before taking on the above P&L responsibility, Joseph played the role of Sales Head and Director – Business Development with Aztecsoft (which was acquired by Mindtree), establishing a relationship with Microsoft and rapidly scaling it into a multi-million dollar account. He was also responsible for winning several large deals during a very critical phase of the company. During his 11 years with the company, Joseph was also involved with Marketing, Account Management and several strategic initiatives.
Joseph holds a Bachelor of Engineering degree from BITS Pilani and PGDM from IIM Ahmedabad.
President & CEO, Digital Business Services (DBS)
Salil has 20 years of experience in the IT industry across global Product and Services companies. His breadth of functional experience include P&L Ownership, Marketing, Vertical Markets Development, Product Management, M&A and Alliances. He has extensive work experience in new business incubation or growth engines from identification to operations.
Prior to Happiest Minds, Salil was with Mindtree for 4 years as the Chief Strategy Officer/M&A and held P&L responsibility of an Industry group. Before Mindtree, Salil gained 12 years’ experience in the United States working for various software product companies large as well as start-ups. His accomplishments include growing a new product to $30 million in revenue, successful market positioning of multiple products, handling global marketing for a $300 million business and multiple M&As.
Salil has a Bachelor’s degree in Industrial engineering from IIT, Roorkee, and is a Masters in Manufacturing Engineering from Boston University.
RAM MOHAN C
President & CEO, Infrastructure Management & Security Services (IMSS)
Ram Mohan C has 30 years of experience in Infrastructure Management and Tech Support. He has been in senior management positions for the last 20 years.
Prior to Happiest Minds, Ram was EVP and Global Head of IMS, Enterprise Integration, Mainframe services business at Mindtree Ltd. These businesses constituted $250m+ which is one third of Mindtree’s business. He was also the CISO for Mindtree and responsible for Automation Initiative across the organization.
Prior to Mindtree, he was EVP (operations) of e4e. He was founder and COO of Vinciti Networks, a specialized service provider in Infrastructure Management and Tech Support which he ran successfully for 5 years and built a 1200 strong team, before rolling up to the holding company. Ram has also had substantial stints with Wipro and MPACT Immedia.
Ram is a winner of the coveted Chairman’s award in Mindtree and is a CSO 100 award winner. He is a distinguished speaker in many Infrastructure and Support forums and seminars. He has also taught MBA (IT) students of Symbiosis.
Ram has Bachelor of Electronics Engineering degree from Bangalore University.
President & Chief Financial Officer
Venkat is a thorough finance professional with 20+ years of rich and diverse experience with a keen eye for business. Venkat hails from a family of Chartered Accountants. He started his career as a Consultant with Arthur Andersen advising and assisting foreign companies setting up operations in India.
While assisting SAP establish its Indian operations he moved into the IT Industry. Since then Venkat has been CFO of multiple services companies in the outsourcing and off-shoring services business. His past experience spans across being CFO of Team Lease – India’s largest Temp Staffing Company, CFO of Sonata Software Limited where he was instrumental and part of one of the best turnaround stories in the recent past, CFO of Perot Systems, Director of Operations at Oracle, and being the first Head of Finance at MindTree Limited.
Venkat is a Chartered Accountant and is known in the Industry for his thought leadership on issues around taxation and related issues faced by the services industry in India.
Officers of the Company
President-Operations & COO, PES
Nanda has 21 years of in-depth global experience in software and enterprise product development having worked with Mindtree, Aztecsoft and IBM in various senior leadership roles. Nanda has led and managed global practices, product development, support and professional services leveraging geographically distributed teams.
Prior to Happiest Minds, Nanda played multiple leadership roles at Aztecsoft (now a part of Mindtree). During his 11 years with the company, he was instrumental in winning many multi-million-dollar deals, running independent P&L units, and in establishing the Product Engineering Practice. During his tenure, he also helped Mindtree establish a thought leadership position in the Offshore Product Engineering segment. Before joining MindtreeAztecsoft, Nanda was leading an engineering team at IBM.
Nanda distinguishes himself in building and sustaining strong customer loyalties. He has an excellent track record of aggressively building, developing and executing strategic vision for business growth. His core strength lies in creating and managing globally distributed engineering teams and practices.
He is responsible for all engineering, technology management, and operational activities of the PES business at Happiest Minds.
Nanda holds a postgraduate degree in Computer Applications from University of Hyderabad and a Bachelor’s degree in Mathematics from Utkal University.
Senior Vice President & Chief Technology Officer
Sridhar has over 25 years of experience in diverse technology management roles. As Chief Technology Officer, Sridhar is responsible for leading Industry domains, technical advisory services and solution accelerator initiatives at Happiest Minds. He is a technologist with hands-on experience in conceptualizing, designing, building & launching products for various startups to industry leaders.
Before joining Happiest Minds, Sridhar was CTO at Mindtree, Product Engineering Services and responsible for setting technology direction, incubating emerging technologies, leading horizontal technology practices and IP initiatives. Sridhar held multiple senior roles in both product and services organizations like Aztecsoft, Tektronix & Tata Elxsi both in India & US.
Sridhar has a Master of Engineering degree in Computer Science from Indian Institute of Science (IISc) and a Bachelor of Engineering from Andhra University in India.
Senior Vice President & Head of CoE, IoT
Sandeep Agarwal has 23+ years of industry experience covering a broad portfolio in across diverse sectors such as Industrial, Consumer Electronics, Digital Enterprise, Telecom Communications, Enterprise Networking, Embedded Technologies and Data Center Domains. At Happiest Minds, Sandeep built the ER&D business acquiring some major and marque customers in Networking, Industrial, Semi and Embedded Technologies. Sandeep helped incubate the IoT focus and forged solid partnerships with Intel, Microsoft, PTC and many other companies to provide end-to-end solutions and system integration services to Happiest Minds’ customers. As part of the Executive Board, Sandeep supports various major and minor initiatives at the company level. Sandeep also actively participates in the ER&D council at IESA and NASSCOM apart from actively partaking in the start-up eco-system.
Prior to joining Happiest Minds, Sandeep was with MindTree for 12+ years and was part of the core team that was instrumental in growing MindTree’s Product Engineering Services business in the global market. He played a key role in establishing successful multi-year relationships with a host of Fortune500 companies. Sandeep was also a recipient of MindTree’s prestigious Chairman’s award and Citizen’s award and headed the PM Council at MindTree for the year 2007-2008.
Sandeep started his career with Tata Unisys in Mumbai, and then moved onto working with Lucent Technologies Bell labs as part of their 3GPP/UMTS initiatives in the late nineties.
Sandeep is a regular speaker at international and domestic industry events and outside of work he is a core member of Words of Peace, Global non-profit organization to support and spread message of peace promoted by its founder Mr. Prem Rawat.
Sandeep Agarwal holds Bachelor of Electronics Engineering degree with distinction from Shivaji University, Maharashtra and also completed the Advanced Computing Diploma from CDAC Pune.
Senior Vice President & Head of CoE, Analytics/AI
With 20 plus years of experience in the technology industry, Sunil leads the Analytics Centre of Excellence and is also part of the Executive board at Happiest Minds. He comes with lots of experience in building and scaling Data Science, Data Engineering and Platform Engineering functions for Fortune 500 companies as well as start-ups.
Before joining Happiest Minds, Sunil was VP of Engineering at Ola and built Data Science and Platform Engineering functions for Customer engagement. Sunil also was a Technology fellow and VP of Data science and Middleware Engineering at investment bank Goldman Sachs where he was heading the Global Data Science function for the Technology division. Prior to Goldman Sachs, Sunil spent time at LinkedIn as a Lead Data Scientist and Head of Data Infrastructure- India.
He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from BVB college of Engineering- Hubli and a Master’s in Business Administration from Lucas School of Business, San Jose, California.
Senior Vice President & Head – Engineering & Business Excellence
Raja has 18 years’ experience in Quality Management, Project Management, Software Engineering processes, Change Management, Metrics and Analytics and Value Engineering. He has been a core member of the quality team in Infosys, one of the largest IT firms in India.
In his most recent role, Raja was responsible for organizational delivery performance and engineering capability improvement. He has extensive experience in leading quality initiatives across the organization.
Raja holds an M.Tech Degree from BITS Pilani.
Vice President & Chief Information, Knowledge and Security Officer
Darshan has over 20 years of experience in technology consulting and implementation across retail, and discrete manufacturing domains. He has held myriad responsibilities from defining solutions to driving efficiencies and enhancing productivity to championing multi-million dollar sales growth for large enterprise accounts.
He is a passionate follower, consumer and evangelist of technology products and trends.
He holds a Bachelor of Technology degree from Regional Engineering College, Warangal.
Darshan has several awards to his credit. Most recently, he was awarded the CIO100 – Astute 100 Award in 2013, the CIO 100 Security Supremo Award in 2014, Top 100 CISO Award in 2014. Under his leadership, Happiest Minds was awarded the 2013 Express IT IT-Biz Award.
Vice President & Chief People Officer
A people oriented leader, Sachin has a proven record of creating, nurturing and executing industry leading people management practices; building an highly motivated and empowering work culture and unwavering organizational growth.
All through his journey, he’s believed that the best kind of success stems from teamwork, collaboration and the trust people put in one another.
Prior to taking on the Chief People Officer’s role at Happiest Minds, Sachin was heading the people function at OSSCube – a global leader in digital transformation solutions which has been consistently ranked among the Top 10 Great Places to Work in India in various studies. OSSCube was acquired by Happiest Minds in the mid of 2017.
Sachin previously served in HR leadership and managerial positions at Lodha Group and Citigroup Global Services.
Sachin is an alumnus of Delhi School of Economics, University of Delhi, where he did his MBA in HR and he also hold a bachelor’s degree in management. Sachin is certified as a Society for Human Resource Management – Senior Certified Professional (SHRM-SCP) and an international certified user for Thomas International Behavioral Instruments (Thomas PPA).
Women leaders in Management Council
Vice President & Global Delivery Head for the Product Engineering Services (PES)
With over 22 years of experience in the technology industry space, Preeti comes with lots of experience in leading large teams delivering multi-million dollar projects. Her expertise lies in managing end to end delivery of Products for IDCs as well as Projects for ISVs. She is currently serving as the Global Delivery Head for the Product Engineering Services (PES) Business Unit.
Before joining Happiest Minds, Preeti was Technical Director at AOL India handling their rich media products that included Winamp, Shoutcast, AOL Video amongst others. Prior, to AOL India, she was part of Symphony Services and was instrumental in setting up their Performance, Scalability and Reliability Engineering team for Seibel.
Preeti holds a Bachelor’s degree in Physics from St. Xavier’s College, Bombay, GNIIT from Bombay and has also done her Accelerated Management Program from ISB.
General Manager & Head of Innovation & Solution Development, IMSS
Priya Kanduri brings in more than 18 years of experience in IT security with domain expertise across Cyber Risk & Analytics, Data privacy & protection, Access Governance, Risk & compliance. She is currently serving as the Head of innovation & security technology practices at Happiest Minds. Priya focuses on the next generation solution development & managed service platforms for IMSS. Her key focus is on cyber security solutions for the new age digital enterprises – ensuring security and agility of their current and future needs.
Before joining Happiest Minds Priya worked with the enterprise security services division of Wipro technologies for over 12 years delivering large compliance and cyber security programs to Fortune 500 companies across UK and Europe regions.
Priya holds a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering from SVU college of Engineering- Tirupati, Andhra Pradesh
SHARON S RAJKUMAR Ph.D.
Director & Happiness Evangelist
Sharon is the Happiness Evangelist at Happiest Minds Technologies. Her unique skill sets are the key to drive the Happiness Agenda across the organization.
Built on the mission to create ‘Happiest People . Happiest Customers’, Happiest Minds believes that happiness enabling practices must be built on strong conceptual frameworks and that happiness and mindfulness enabling strategies must filter throughout the organization across its business operations.
Her role is to distill the tenets of happiness into organizational practices; synthesize the vast body of knowledge on Happiness and disseminate within the company, assess the effectiveness of the people practices through happiness quotients and drive improvements; and assimilate the culture of the organization that is built on the key values of Sharing, Mindful, Integrity, Learning, Excellence and Social Responsibility (SMILES). These values are an integral part of the organizational fabric and form the foundation of long-term relationships and lasting partnerships amongst the key stakeholders.
She has been with Happiest Minds since its inception in Aug 2011.Prior to Happiest Minds, she has been with Corporate for 6 years and moved into Academics, where she has been a Professor for 10 years with Christ University Institute of Management and for 4 years with Bharathidasan Institute of Management, Tiruchirapalli as Professor and PGP Chairperson.
Sharon has hosted and participated in various workshops and seminars throughout the country.She holds a PhD in the area of Servant-Leadership, an MPhil in Entrepreneurship and an MBA from Bharathidasan Institute of Management, Tiruchirapalli.
Sharon’s interests are in mentoring, counselling and recently, painting.