More Women CEOs in India than U.S.
si Team
Thursday, December 31, 2009
Indian women may not have proportionate representation in companies, but they are better off than women elsewhere. About 11 percent of 240 large companies - Indian-owned as well as multinational, private as well as state-owned - have women CEOs, according to a study by executive search firm EMA Partners. In comparison, only three percent of the Fortune 500 companies have women CEOs.

“Amongst private and foreign banks, women almost outnumber men. This has been helped in no mean measure by women from ICICI bank, who have joined other financial institutions in recent times,” said EMA Partners Managing Partner, K Sudarshan. In the Fortune 500 list, only seven percent women CEOs are from financial services. In Indian scenario women like Chanda Kochhar the Managing Director and CEO of ICICI Bank, ex-ICICI Prudential Chief Shikha Sharma who now heads Axis Bank and Kalpana Morparia, Country Head of JP Morgan are some of the most prominent ones.

Also, about 11 percent of the Indian women CEOs are in the media and another 11 percent in pharmaceuticals. Kiran Mazumdar-Shaw is the Chairman and Managing Director of Biocon and Villoo Morawala Patel is the Founder, Chairman and Managing Director of Avesthagen. Eight percent are in consulting and another eight percent in FMCG and consumer durables. The big names here are Vinita Bali of Britannia and Nadia Chauhan of Parle Agro. Four percent each can be found in manufacturing and IT and IT-enabled services. But, in the Fortune 500 list, 48 percent of the women CEOs came from FMCG and consumer durables. Manufacturing and IT and IT-enables services returned 13 percent each.

However, most experts say that women are under-represented in corner offices across the world. “Given that roughly about 50 percent of our population is female, that about 50 percent of staff is female in most markets, the gender is hugely unrepresented in boards and at the CEO level,” said EMA Partners International Chairman James Douglas. According to various studies and EMA Partners’ estimates, there is no shortage of female talent. In Germany, over 25 percent executives are women, in the UK more than 30 percent and in France over 35 percent.
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