The Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) has appointed Madhu Kannan as its managing director and chief executive officer. Kannan was earlier the managing director (corporate strategy), Bank of America-Merrill Lynch, based out of New York. Kannan comes in at a time when equity markets has just started to show signs of recovery.

The post of CEO has been lying vacant ever since its managing director, Rajnikant Patel, resigned abruptly in August last year. Patel has joined Reliance money to look after its exchange business.

BSE had appointed Egon Zehnder to shortlist candidate for the CEO's job. Besides Kannan, others in the race were National Stock Exchange CTO Ravi Apte, Reliance Industries CIO Ashish Chauhan and the current COO and acting CEO of BSE, M L Soneji.

Bombay Stock Exchange faces a tough task ahead. Though it still remains one of the largest exchanges in the country, National Stock Exchange (NSE) accounts for most of the trading volumes in India. Also companies like MCX are setting up new exchanges, and foreign bourses like NYSE Euronext are also actively soliciting Indian companies, the competition is likely to increase going ahead.

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