This is a first for a Vedanta CEO and points to the growing importance of the group’s investments on the continent. Srinivasan Venkatakrishna commenced as the CEO of Anil Agarwal-led Vedanta Resources plc today, replacing interim CEO Kuldip Kaura. The mining mogul-led company announced the appointment of Venkatakrishna in April.
Venkatakrishnan, 53, worked as the CEO of Johannesburg-based AngloGold for five years and spent much of his career working in Africa.
Between 2005 and 2013, he was AngloGold Ashanti ‘s Chief Financial Officer and prior to this, he was CFO of London-listed Ashanti Goldfields Ltd.
Vedanta had in August last year appointed an interim chief executive, Kaura, to replace Tom Albanese . Albanese, a former chief executive of rival Rio Tinto, returned to the US after his three-year contract, which was extended by five months, expired at the end of August.
Kaura was made interim CEO from September 1 but he did not serve as a director on the board.
Venkat said Vedanta has an outstanding reputation as a global, diversified resources business with world-class assets and an exceptional team.
"My initial focus will be to ensure continued operational excellence, efficient cost management and capital discipline across the portfolio, while continuing to drive improvements to the overall sustainability performance of the business, thereby creating long-term value for all stakeholders," he said.
Kaura, who started off working for ABB India, was chief executive of Vedanta between 2005 and 2008. He has since worked as president of the chairman’s office at the company.
Venkat is a qualified Chartered Accountant who holds a Bachelor’s degree from the University of Madras.