| Top: Arun Bharat Ram, Uday S. Kotak Bottom: Kiran Mazumdar Shaw and Swati A. Piramal
New Delhi, Dec. 31: India Inc has had a great year in 2004; but what are its chief executives looking forward to in 2005'
Kiran Mazumdar Shaw, chairman and managing director of Biocon India, says her new year resolution will be to 'help the poor and the needy, to help improve the quality of their lives', while Rahul Bajaj, chairman of Bajaj Auto, plans to 'continue to read a lot in year 2005 and undertake extensive work-related travel'.
'There has been a very tragic end to this year because of the tsunami disaster. I think the tragedy should remind us all of how much we need to do for the poor,' says Mazumdar-Shaw, who was the only Indian woman to figure on Forbes magazine's list of 40 richest Indians that came out last month.
'Professionally, it has been a very good, rewarding year for me (after a successful IPO). In the coming year, I intend to work very hard because I realise that I have a huge responsibility towards my shareholders.'
She also wants to catch up with her reading and says Harvard professor C. K. Prahalad's book, 'Competing for future', is one of the books that she intends to read next year. She also wants to do a lot of reading in modern medicine ' especially on cancer. In addition, she would love to watch one movie ' English or Hindi ' at Bangalore's new multiplex.
Bajaj says, 'It's been a very good year for Bajaj Auto, which has turned in a good performance.'
'I have not yet made any new year resolutions till date,' said Bajaj. 'I don't think I have any reason to change my mindset.'
Arun Bharat Ram, vice chairman and managing director of SRF Ltd, says, 'As far as business is concerned, it was a very good year. Year 2005, will be the year for growth and expansion.' He also intends to catch up with his golf in 2005 'something for which I do not have much time'.
He added, 'I had to get into active management last year. But wish I should have done it much earlier.'
Swati A. Piramal, director, strategic alliances and communications, Nicholas Piramal India Ltd, says, 'It has been a great year as far as business achievement is concerned. The company has had a good performance. The new patent regime marks a good beginning for us.'
'At the moment, I am also concentrating on relief and rehabilitation work for the tsunami-hit countries,' she said.
'I regret not reading enough, especially English literature and poetry by Rabindranath Tagore. I wish I knew how to read Bengali, so that I could read him in the original,' Piramal added.
'In 2005, I want to complete writing my two books. One will be a book for children on 'Stories of science' and the other is a cook-book named 'Pickle Journey'. The second is a book, which talks about recipes that were handed down by her grandmother.
Onkar S. Kanwar, chairman and managing director of Apollo Tyres, says,'The year 2004 saw India emerging with a new confidence, thriving on the back of a solid economic achievement.'
He adds 'we need to sustain this and scale new heights of growth in year 2005.'
'On the personal front, the year gone by has been very busy. If time and commitment permits, I would like to spend more time with my family, work hard on staying fit and travel to exotic destinations with no work agenda,' said Kanwar, who took over earlier this week as the new Ficci president.
'I also hope that the coming year will allow me some time to start picking up the finer points of playing golf, something which I have been trying to learn for a while.'
Adi B. Godrej, chairman of the Godrej Group says 'I never make any new year resolutions'.
Uday S. Kotak, chairman and managing director of Kotak Mahindra Bank says it's been 'a good year with some market volatility. But it's a year that makes me feel proud of being an Indian'.
'Personally and professionally, it's been a very satisfying year,' said Kotak.
'However, giving time to family is a big issue. In year 2005, I would love to spend more time with my kids and have an exciting holiday. Also, I would love the excitement of building a world class institution in the coming year.'
Baba N. Kalyani, chairman and managing director of Bharat Forge limited says 'as for business, an extremely good year but the sad part was tsunami. Next year, we will undoubtedly like to very aggressively, expand globally and double our capacity from 1,20,000 tonnes to 2,40,000 tonnes.'
'On the personal front, I will try to catch up with lots of sleep and exercise enough,' said Kalyani.