Ajay Banga, an Indian-American, was nominated by US President Joe Biden on Thursday to lead the World Bank. David Malpass, who has led the banking firm since 2019, will be replaced by Banga. If confirmed, this will mark the first time an Indian-American will lead the international organisation with its headquarters in Washington.
Who is Ajay Banga?
– Banga, who was born in the Maharashtra city of Pune, went on to lead some of the major multinational corporations, including Mastercard, Citigroup, Nestle, and PepsiCo. He graduated from St. Stephen’s College, Delhi University, with a bachelor’s in economics, and the Indian Institute of Management-Ahmedabad awarded him a PGP in management (IIM-A). He received the Padma Shri, the fourth-highest civilian honour, from the Indian government in 2016.
– Although he was born and raised in India, Banga is now a citizen of the United States and serves as vice chair of General Atlantic, a private equity firm that has invested more than $800 million in solar energy, sustainable agriculture, and EV charging stations. Also, he chairs the World Chamber of Commerce on an honorary basis.
– Before joining General Atlantic, Banga served as the CEO of Mastercard, where he oversaw efforts related to climate change, gender equality, and sustainable agriculture. He set a goal of putting 1 billion people and 50 million small businesses online by 2025.
– Banga has also held the position of Asia Pacific Region CEO for Citigroup. He was in charge of all the business lines for the organisation in the area at the time, including institutional banking, alternative investments, wealth management, consumer banking, and credit cards.
– Banga started his professional career with Nestle, where he spent 13 years working on projects in the areas of sales, marketing, and general management. He worked for PepsiCo for two years, where he played a key role in the opening of the company’s fast-food franchises in India.
US President Biden proposed Banga for the head position at the World Bank, claiming that he is ideally qualified to steer the organisation “at this important juncture in history.” According to Biden, “He has spent more than three decades founding and leading successful, multinational businesses that bring investment to emerging nations and create jobs, as well as directing organisations through periods of profound transformation.” “He has a demonstrated track record managing people and systems and collaborating with global leaders to create results,” says the statement.
The US President added that Banga has significant expertise in mobilising public and private resources to address today’s most pressing problems, including climate change. The World Bank can accomplish its ambitious mission to eliminate poverty and increase prosperity, according to Ajay, who was raised in India. He has a unique perspective on the opportunities and problems that face developing countries.
As co-chair of the Partnership for Central America, which has mobilised over $4 billion in public, private, and non-profit financing to advance economic opportunity in Northern Central America, Banga worked closely with Vice President Kamala Harris.
Ajay Banga Wife
Ajay is married to Ritu Banga and they have two children together, Jojo Banga and Aditi Banga.