Independent Directors

Avinash Persaud - Non Executive Chairman

Avinash Persaud's illustrious career spans finance, academic and public policy. A renowned authority in currency, he is also the Chairman of Intelligence Capital Limited and Paradise Beach Limited. He headed State Street Bank & Trust as its managing director and was global head for currency and commodity research at J. P. Morgan. He is emeritus Professor, Gresham College, Senior Fellow, London Business School, Visiting Fellow, CFAP, Cambridge University, Governor, London School of Economics, Member of Council, Royal Economics Society; and President of the Economics Section, British Association for the Advancement of Science. He is a winner of the Jacques de Larosiere Award in Global Finance from IIF, Washington. On financial policies, he was the Chairman, Warwick Commission, Member, Pew Congressional Task Force, US, Member, UN Commission of Experts and Member, International Task Force on Financial Transaction Taxes. He is a former Visiting Scholar of the IMF and ECB and Member of the UK Treasury's Audit & Risk Committee.

Mark Runacres - Non-Executive Director

Mark is the India Adviser to the Confederation of British Industry, and chair of the British Business Group in Delhi. 

Mark has a range of business interests across sectors in India, including Sheffield Haworth (India), a JV in executive search, and The Hearth Education Advisors. Mark is also on the Boards of:  SQN Services Pvt Ltd; Mass1 Engagement Pvt Ltd; and the Business and Community Foundation. He used to serve on the Boards of Mindtree, G4S (India) and A4e India. In the communications field, Mark is on the Advisory Board of Avian Media, one of India’s most successful PR/Public Affairs firms, as well as Public Affairs Asia. 

 In a previous career, Mark served for 25 years in the British Diplomatic Service, with postings in Paris, New York and New Delhi, where his last job was as Deputy High Commissioner managing Britain’s biggest diplomatic operation from 2002-2006.

Saurabh Srivastava - Independent Director

Saurabh Srivastava is one of India's leading IT entrepreneurs, angel investors and venture capitalists. He has worked extensively in the US, UK, India and Singapore and has held senior executive positions with leading international companies such as IBM and Unisys before becoming an entrepreneur and then a VC Srivastava is one of India's most respected IT industry leaders and is recognized as one of the architects of the Indian software industry. He cofounded, chaired and is now Chairman Emeritus of NASSCOM. He was Chairman of the Indian government's Electronics and Computer Software Export Promotion Council for 4 years. He has chaired the IT Committee of FICCI and has been on the National Committee of the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII).

T.N.SHANKAR - Non-Executive Director

Shankar has twenty two years of experience, of which the last ten has been as head of manufacturing businesses in India and in South Africa. Key career achievements were, concluding a Joint venture with an Austrian company; setting up a green field project in India; Managing acquisition of an Engineering company in South Africa. Prior work includes Management consultancy for a premier consulting company and in corporate planning for a large conglomerate in India. Shankar is a Mechanical Engineer from IIT, Chennai and an MBA from IIM Bangalore.

Rakesh Puri - Non-Executive Director

Rakesh has over 20  years of post qualification progressive experience in Senior Positions  in listed and multinational companies in securities market, finance, operations, compliance and legal, corporate secretarial, takeovers and managing IPOs and Institutional placements. Prior to joining Elara as Director in January 2007, he worked with CLSA Group.   Rakesh has been involved with transaction management of IPOs/Rights/QIP/PE/Open offers of over 3 billion USD, namely TCS, NTPC, Suzlon, Kiri Dyes, Crompton Greaves, Emco, PCIL, Deccan Chronicle, E*Trade and Parabolic Drugs and has worked on numerous cross-border transactions. He has been responsible for setting up Elara in India and also for starting new offices in Singapore, Mauritius and New York. He is commerce graduate, holds a post graduate degree in Law (Professional), is fellow member of ICSI and also qualified CPA from USA . He also holds NSE´s Certification in Financial Markets in Equity, Compliance, Depository and Corporate Governance modules.

Peter Church – Independent Director

Peter Church is an international lawyer, business adviser and author who has lived and worked in the South East Asian region for more than 35 years and is based in Singapore. His primary roles are chairing AFG Venture Group and acting as Special Counsel to the leading English law firm of Stephenson Harwood.  Other roles include his appointment as a Non Executive Director of the Singapore International Chamber of Commerce Limited, a Non Executive Director of OM Holdings Limited (an ASX listed manganese miner) and Chairman of the Indochina Starfish Foundation (an Australian charity focused on the street children of Phnom Penh, Cambodia).  Peter was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia (OAM) by the Australian Government in 1994 for his services to the promotion of business relations between Australia and the South East Asian region. He has written a number of books,including his most recent book, Added Value - The Life Stories of Indian Business Leaders.