In yet another sign of rising Indian dominance in the global business arena, eight corporate bigwigs from the country have made it to the list of the world’s best chief executive officers. The list that Harvard Business Review has come out with is led by former Apple chief Steve Jobs, who passed away last year. The sole Indian representation in the top 10 is ITC Chairman Y C Deveshwar at seventh. The 65-year-old joined the Kolkata-based cigarette-to-hotels major joined ITC in 1968 and became its chief executive and chairman in 1996. Deveshwar pipped other Indian corporate honchos, including ONGC former chairman and managing director Subir Raha (ranked 13), RIL chairman and CEO Mukesh Ambani (28), Larsen & Toubro’s A M Naik (32), former Bharat Heavy Electricals CMD A K Puri (38), Bharti Airtel’s Sunil Bharti Mittal (65), Jindal Steel & Power’s Naveen Jindal (87) and former SAIL chief V S Jain (89) — among other global business leaders.
Harvard Business Review has rated the CEOs based on the long-term performance of the companies and the contributions that the CEOs have made to them.(BEST OF ‘EM ALL) The criteria included how much total shareholder returns had changed during their tenure and the overall increase in market capitalisation. Jobs earned the top spot, as from 1997 to 2011, Apple’s market value increased by $359 billion. Those who are in the top 5 also include Jeff Bezos of Amazon.com (2), Yun Jong-Yong of Samsung Electronics (3), Roger Agnelli of Vale (4) and John C Martin of Gilead Sciences (5).
During Deveshwar’s tenure, ITC’s market value increased by $45 billion, which made him the Indian representative in the top-10 league. In 2011, he was conferred the Padma Bhushan by the government of India, honouring his contributions to the nation. While HBR’s top 100 list in 2010 had candidates from the S&P Global 1200 and BRIC 40 lists, this year it worked with three other emerging-market indexes as well. The pool of CEOs studied increased by roughly one-third, from 1,999 in 2010 to 3,143 this year. HBR stated this year’s list looked at criteria like making the group truly global and financial performance during their tenure and also in terms of corporate social performance for the selection process.