Saturday, October 08, 2022

Who is Sunil Bhaskaran, the Tata Group veteran who could head Air India Express and AirAsia India merged venture?

The Tata Group will soon embark on the process to consolidate its airline holdings in India. As part of the process, Air India Express and AirAsia India are expected to be merged into a new lost-cost carrier by 2024. The frontrunner for leading this new venture is Sunil Bhaskaran, sources told Business Standard.

Bhaskaran, the chief executive officer (CEO) and managing director (MD) at AirAsia India, is a Tata Group veteran with over 35 years of experience at the Indian multinational conglomerate. A graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology-Delhi and the Indian Institute of Management-Kolkata, Bhaskaran went to INSEAD’s CEDEP, also known as The European Centre for Executive Development, for General Management and Executive Development.

After completing his PGDM in Finance and Marketing from IIM-K, Bhaskaran joined Tata Steel in1987. During his tenure, Bhaskaran held various responsibilities and roles like Marketing Head, Branch head, Executive Assistant to the Director of Marketing, and more. In 2002, he was promoted to the position of Principal Executive Officer, Vice President and Corporate Quality Head at Tata International Limited.

Just over three years later, Bhaskaran returned to Tata Steel in the position of Executive in-Charge (Global Wires Business) before being promoted to Vice President (Corporate Services) in 2013. In November 2018, Bhaskaran was made the CEO and MD of the new AirAsia joint venture between Tata Sons and AirAsia Berhad.

Bhaskaran is also a co-chair of the Confederation of Indian Industries – National Committee on Civil Aviation, an invitee of the All India Management Association Council (AIMA), and Chairman of the TATA Network Forum - South. Bhaskaran is also the Founder Director of Jamshedpur Football Club, a team in the Indian Super League.


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