Securities depository firm CDSL hires legal chief ahead of IPO

Central Depository Services India Ltd (CDSL) has appointed Nirogi Venkata Sesha Pavan Kumar as group vice president for legal, company secretary and compliance officer ahead of its initial public offering.

Kumar joins CDSL from Fairfax-controlled business services provider Quess Corp Ltd, where he oversaw corporate affairs, legal, investor relations and corporate governance matters as a board secretary and general counsel.

At Mumbai-based CDSL, Kumar will be in charge of legal and regulatory work and compliance, two people familiar with the development said. He joined CDSL last month, his LinkedIn profile shows.

Kumar has 15 years of experience. He studied law at Acharya Nagarjuna University in Andhra Pradesh and completed his company secretary course in 2002. He started his career with Reliance Energy Ltd and later worked with Nagarjuna Fertilizers & Chemicals Ltd, GMR Group, Dr Reddy’s Laboratories Ltd, NCC Ltd, The Global Green Company Ltd and Greenko Group Plc before joining Quess Corp.

Anuja Bose, a senior consultant at legal research and consulting firm Vahura, said that Kumar’s appointment was “an interesting move” since financial services firms are typically considered to be more conservative when it comes to cross-sector hiring. “However, Kumar will be able to add value in his new role as he has worked across sectors from ITeS to manufacturing.”

An email query to CDSL did not elicit any response till the time of filing the story.

CDSL facilitates deposits of securities by opening an account. Securities such as shares, debentures and bonds of investors are held in electronic form (dematerialized form) at the depositories. According to company’s draft red hearing prospectus (DRHP) it has about 1.6 crore investor accounts

The company filed draft documents for its IPO late last month. The size of the IPO is estimated to be Rs 450 crore.

The IPO will comprise an offer for sale by some CDSL shareholders including stock-exchange operator BSE Ltd, State Bank of India and Bank of Baroda. Law firms AZB & Partners, Nishith Desai & Associates and Herbert Smith Freehills LLP are advising the depository for this IPO.

More and more companies are looking to recruit people who have work experience in legal as well as compliance functions. For instance, IndiaFirst Life Insurance Co Ltd recently recruited Prashant Saini as head of legal and compliance.

In December, Vivek Rajan, assistant vice president for legal and compliance at Scope International Pvt. Ltd, an IT services unit of Standard Chartered Bank, joined oncology chain HealthCare Global Enterprises Ltd as head of legal and compliance.

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