Industry veterans and influential CFOs gathered together to ideate the framework for the first ever CFO Choice recognitions. By Shweta Gandhi
Tuesday evening eminent and influential CFOs gathered together for CORE Media’s first CFO Choice 2016 advisory panel meet. Held at Sofitel hotel in Mumbai, the evening saw industry stalwarts ideating and discussing how to build a framework for the most powerful discovery and sales acceleration tool for brands or products designed to serve the finance and accounting communities.
Anoop Mathur, CORE Media President, and Sanjay Mehta, CORE Director, kick-started the session by giving a quick introduction to CFO Choice 2016 and outlining the agenda for the day. In his keynote, Sanjay said, “CFOs are in a position of power and are for facilitating compliance, accounts, treasury and finance strategy in any large enterprise. They drive engagements and business transformations within enterprises, which is why we want to build a community dedicated to CFOs.”
The assembled CFOs were then asked for their inputs on the various service provider categories, the voting process, voting duration and the final event. The CFOs animatedly discussed the categories and realised that there were many products, services and solutions that were present in this space. They agreed to first focus on the broad categories, like banking, taxation, insurance, analytics, etc, and then delve into further sub-categories.
“CFO Choice is a great platform to come together and share ideas with CFOs all across the industry. And vendors also stand to benefit with the ideas exchanged so as to bring in more efficiency, improve turnaround time and see how taxation can be more effective with GST coming in very soon,” said Amit Bapna, CFO, Reliance Capital Ltd. Nitin Nadkarni, CFO, Sony Pictures Networks India Pvt Ltd, agreed with Amit, saying, “CFO Choice will act as a stamp of approval for vendors to know what the community feels about them and it will be a great USP for them when they are looking for potential clients. I’m very excited to be part of this advisory panel.”
Bharat Banka, Chief Patron of CFO Choice, and a consultant with over 24 years experience in finance, spoke about how this platform could be leveraged by CFOs. “I believe CFOs play a very strong role in developing an organisation. CFO Choice is a platform that allows CFOs to get to the right vendors who prove beneficial.” Sushil Agarwal, Group CFO and Whole Time Director, Grasim Industries Ltd (Aditya Birla Group), added, “If someone has used a vendor and knows their quality and pricing, it would help the next user, and this will be achieved through CFO Choice.”
“With increasing regulations, compliance and new laws, the need for CFOs has really gone up and quality advisors and quality input is very critical,” said Sonal Shrivastava, Country CFO, Lafarge Group. “A readymade platform where it is easy for CFOs to reach out and get connected with the right vendors of all shapes and sizes will prove highly beneficial.”
Talking about the meet, Giri Giridhar, Senior Director Finance, MSD Pharmaceuticals Pvt Ltd, said, “The meet was exciting, and the objectives and ground rules were set. Things will now evolve as we grow. And the fact that it’s building on the CIO Choice experience will prove helpful.” Jaimin Bhatt, President and Group CFO, Kotak Mahindra Bank Ltd, echoed his sentiments, “It will be interesting to see how this progresses. We swapped a lot of ideas and we just have to polish it as we go forward.”
S Subramaniam, CFO, Titan Company Ltd, spoke about how this platform would help the changing role of the CFO. “Initially the CFOs work would be controlling the treasury, but now it’s totally different. The CFO now has to be more of a business guy than a finance guy, because he has to know how their company can push for growth. Business has become an integral part of the role of a CFO today.”
“The role of a CFO is akin to a magician,” added Sunil Chandiramani, Chief Patron of CFO Choice and CEO of consulting firm NYKA Advisory. “He has to be a strategic talker, well versed with laws, good at joining the dots between different fields like HR, finance and technology and needs to balance what’s right.”
The advisory panel will now individually consider the broad service provider categories and further build on that to create the framework for the nominee process.
CFO Choice’s mission is to create a B2B platform of trust that can be leveraged by the CFO community as well as vendors for accelerated business. CFO Choice will garner the country’s most inspirational finance, accounting and compliance products, services and solutions that have fortified their presence in the hearts and minds of CFOs. It is a recognition and validation that CFOs can trust because it is ‘By the CFO and for the CFO’. It offers the CFO community an authentic aid to finding and considering the most preferred and stable products, services and solutions.