Axis Capital CEO Dharmesh Mehta resigns

By Ankit Doshi

  • 04 Dec 2018
Credit: VCCircle

Dharmesh Mehta has resigned as the managing director and chief executive officer of Axis Capital, the investment banking firm’s parent entity Axis Bank Ltd announced on Tuesday.

The private-sector lender has elevated Salil Pitale and Chirag Negandhi as joint MDs and co-CEOs with immediate effect to replace Mehta. It has sought regulatory approvals for the appointments.

Both Pitale and Negandhi had held the post of co-head of the investment banking vertical at Axis Capital since 2016.

“Mr. Dharmesh Mehta, MD & CEO of Axis Capital Limited today submitted his resignation having decided to pursue other interests,” read the Axis Bank statement. “The Board of Axis Capital accepted his resignation in their meeting held today.”
VCCircle had reported a fortnight ago that Mehta, among four other suitors, had submitted a bid in his personal capacity to acquire IDFC Securities Ltd, the securities broking and investment banking business of non-banking financial company IDFC Ltd.

Mehta has about three decades of exposure to capital markets. He held various leadership positions at Enam Securities (which was acquired by Axis Bank in 2010) and Axis Capital, building its institutional business to make it a market leader.

Mehta was elevated as Axis Capital’s MD and CEO in early-2015 to replace Nilesh Shah, who quit to join Kotak Mahindra Asset Management Company after spending four years at the investment banking outfit.

Since Mehta took charge, Axis Capital has completed 84 equity capital market (ECM) and block deals, 37 mergers and acquisitions (M&A), 10 private equity deals, eight structured finance deals and five public debt transactions.

Pitale, a graduate in computer engineering and an MBA from Indian Institute of Management-Lucknow, has been associated with the firm since 1999, and has led several sector practices for the investment banking division, besides managing large strategic corporate relationships for the bank.

Negandhi, a graduate in business administration from Purdue University in the US, worked with ENAM Securities since 2005 and later joined Axis Capital as part of the acquisition by Axis Bank.

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