Mumbai: CNBC-TV18, India’s leading business news channel, concluded the highly anticipated edition 18 of the most-coveted awards – The India Business Leaders Awards (IBLA) 2023, on a spectacular note on 11 May at the Jio World Convention, Mumbai. The prestigious award event aimed to recognise and applaud the efforts of exceptional individuals who have played a pivotal role in steering the nation towards equitable economic growth in 2022.
The commencement of the evening was marked by a welcome address delivered by CNBC-TV18's managing editor Shereen Bhan. Setting the tone for the evening, Shereen highlighted that the 18 edition of IBLA holds a special significance, as the number '18' is an integral part of CNBC-TV18’s brand identity. She further commented, “For 18 years, IBLA has been tracking the progress of some of India's most exceptional leaders representing different sectors, industries and regions. Despite their diverse backgrounds, these awardees are united by a common thread - a shared vision of institution building and a desire to create value not only for their customers and employees but also for society. The India Business Leaders Awards are a celebration of the exceptional achievements of these visionary leaders.
Commenting on the occasion, Standard Chartered Bank cluster CEO- India and South Asia markets Zarin Daruwala said, “Congratulations to all the winners of CNBC-TV18 India Business Leader Awards (IBLA). Standard Chartered is proud to be associated with IBLA for the past seven years and partner this august platform to recognise excellence in leadership. It was inspiring to hear of the accomplishments and celebrate the winners of this year’s awards as always. Having been part of the jury for the last several years has been an exciting and insightful journey, as you get to know the latest and outstanding work and many facets of leadership across diverse sectors. Also, my heartiest congratulations to CNBC-TV18 India Business Leader Awards on completing 18 glorious years.”
Azim Premji Foundation chairman and Wipro Ltd. & Wipro Enterprises founder chairman Azim Premji, was inducted into the IBLA 'Hall of Fame' title. "Self-belief is the greatest quality that will help drive us into the next sphere. Belief in ourselves, what we can achieve as a country and what we can achieve as a nation," said Premji.
Tata Steel MD & CEO TV Narendran was honored with the title of 'Outstanding Business Leader of the Year.' In his acceptance speech, he expressed his vision of leaving behind a financially and culturally future-ready organisation. He said, “Leveraging India's geological richness, Tata Steel aspires to play a significant role in the country's journey towards sustainability. The company has set a goal to become net-zero by 2045, providing an opportunity to collaborate with startups and pursue a variety of solutions. While Europe is already progressing in this direction, India is also moving ahead.” Additionally, TV Narendran emphasized the importance of choosing an industry and a company that one is passionate about.
TVS Motor, emeritus chairman Venu Srinivasan received the ‘Lifetime Achievement Award.’ Reflecting on his journey, Srinivasan shared, "I was thrown into the deep end at the age of 26 when my father died. Although I struggled initially, success began coming easily. Sometimes, when success comes too easily, we trip and fall. I've handed over the baton to the next generation and hope they will achieve our milestones.”
Infosys was awarded the 'Outstanding Company of the Year' award, MD & CEO, Salil Parekh in his acceptance speech acknowledged the potential of generative AI and its impact on productivity and said, "Generative AI is the next frontier for everyone. Generative AI allows for a huge impact on productivity. Infosys has used its own tools on open-source platforms to allow software to be developed faster. I believe India can be a leader in generative AI. It will contribute to making India a leader in generative AI. The future for technology is incredible."
The 18 IBLA was graced by eminent policymakers from India like Hardeep Singh Puri (Union minister for housing and urban affairs, and the minister for petroleum & natural gas, GoI); Devendra Fadnavis (Deputy chief minister, Govt. of Maharashtra); and Amitabh Kant (G20 Sherpa, GoI).
During a candid conversation with Shereen Bhan, Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri said India would continue to import Russian crude. He said, “The world consumes 100 million barrels per day of oil. India consumes 5 MBPD. We have no ideological hang ups on where we import our crude oil from. Our foremost commitment is to our own citizens.” Deputy CM of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis discussed the state's 'third Mumbai' plan and shared details about the upcoming multimodal corridor project, which is expected to generate a value of over six lakh crore and bring development to the Navi Mumbai and Panvel areas.
Other awards included ‘The Disruptor of the year' was given to Idea Forge. SEWA founder late Ela Bhatt was felicitated as the ‘Social Impact Icon’; the award for 'Outstanding Contribution to Brand India' was awarded to NPCI MD & CEO Dilip Asbe; Indian boxer Nikhat Zareen was awarded 'Sports Leader of the Year’; while Bollywood actress Alia Bhatt was felicitated with 'Entertainment Leader of the Year' title; the award for 'Game Changer of the Year’ went to BCCI, for bringing gender parity in compensation and for launching the Women’s Premier League. BCCI general secretary, Jay Shah received the award. The IBLA stage also played host to the pioneers of Women Cricket with former India captain Mithali Raj, Jhulan Goswami, India captain Harmanpreet Kaur, Smriti Mandhana, Jemimah Rodrigues sharing their thoughts on the road ahead.
The award for 'Brand Campaign of the Year’ went to Dove (HUL) and the award for 'Young Turk Startup of the Year' went to Skyroot. IBLA In Memoriam, honoured industry stalwarts posthumously - Toyota Kirloskar Motor vice chairman Vikram Kirloskar, Tata Group chairman Cyrus Mistry; investor Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, and Luthra and Luthra Law Offices founder & managing partner Rajeev Luthra.
The winners were selected by an esteemed jury chaired by Aditya Birla Group chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla. The jury also had exemplary leaders such as Kotak Mahindra Bank MD & CEO Uday Kotak; Zarin Daruwala (Cluster CEO of India and South Asia Markets- Bangladesh, Nepal and Sri Lanka, Standard Chartered Bank); State Bank of India chairman Dinesh Kumar Khara; Hindustan Unilever Limited chairman & MD Sanjeev Mehta; Mahindra Group MD & CEO Anish Shah; Tata Steel MD & CEO TV Narendran; Colgate MD & CEO Prabha Narsimhan; IDFC First Bank MD & CEO V Vaidyanathan; Serum Institute of India CEO Adar Poonawalla; and EY India chairman & regional managing partner Rajiv Memani.