UK-based 3i has appointed Anil Ahuja as the head of Asia. In his new role he will lead 3i's investment teams across Asia, working with 3i's local business heads in China, Singapore and India.

Based in 3i's Singapore office, Anil will continue to report to Chris Rowlands, chairman, 3i Asia who is also a member of 3i's management committee. According to a press statement issued by the firm, 3i's investment portfolio in Asia has grown almost tenfold since 2004.

The private equity group added that this appointment underlines the increasing importance of Asia in 3i's global strategy going forward. Chris Rowlands, Chairman, 3i Asia said in a press statement: "Anil's appointment is consistent with our approach of developing local Asian talent to lead this growing business."

3i has had a local presence in India for the last four years with an office in Mumbai, and set up a Delhi office in 2007. It has invested in sectors such as media, automotives, construction, power, ports and manufacturing, amongst others. As per its website, 3i manages an investment portfolio valued at $920 million in the country. Some of its portfolio companies include Vijai Electricals, Nimbus Communications, International Tractors, UFO Moviez. Mundra Ports was 3i's first investment in India to go public in November 2007. 3i is also an investor in an Indian real estate fund.

Last year in April 2008, 3i closed the first of a slew of billion dollar infrastructure funds targeted at India, raising $1.2 billion India Infrastructure fund. This followed a strategic partnership with the India Infrastructure Finance Company(IIFCL) in April 2007, to invest in Indian infrastructure.

Ahuja joined 3i in April 2005 and carries more than two decades of experience in international financial services. He is part of the first generation of private equity investors in India, with over 10 years investment experience. Before the elevation he was primarily responsible for developing 3i's Indian business.

Prior to joining 3i, from 1997 to 2005, Ahuja worked at JP Morgan Partners Asia, looking at investments in the Indian market. Before that(1986 to 1997) he worked with Citibank Mumbai.

Ahuja, a IIM (Ahmedabad)-IIT (Delhi) alumni, currently sits on the board of Vijai Electricals and Nimbus Communications and has previously served on boards of Adani Power, HDFC Bank, HDFC Securities, Domino's Pizza India, MTR Foods and Microland.

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