Consultant, Strategy and Business
Prof. Achal Raghavan is a Strategy And Business Excellence Consultant based at Bangalore. He provides consulting, mentoring and executive education services in the areas of strategy, business excellence and ethics. His work is currently focused on automotive, engineering and IT industries. Prof. Raghavan brings with him 40 years of work experience, including 8 years as a consultant. In this period, he has held Board-level positions for over 11 years, in companies such as Delphi Automotive Systems, India, Ingersoll-Rand (India) and Cramlington Precision Forge, UK. His work experience includes tenures in Sundram Fasteners (TVS Group), the Anand Group and Larsen & Toubro. He has travelled to over 30 countries on business.
He teaches at Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad (IIMA) as visiting faculty, and at Indian Institute of Management, Bangalore (IIMB) as Adjunct Faculty. At IIMB, he teaches “Green Business Management” – a unique course he has created in the strategy area that deals with the challenges and opportunities managers face when dealing with climate change and sustainability. Additionally, at IIMB and IIMA, he teaches “Ethics in Business Management”. Raghavan has been on the faculty team for executive education programs conducted by IIMB for various global corporations. He has also taught at IIM Indore as visiting faculty for many years.
Raghavan acquired his bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras (IITM) in 1973, and a PGDM (MBA) from IIMA in 1977.
Raghavan started his career in Larsen & Toubro in 1973 as a sales engineer for earthmoving equipment. Subsequently, after obtaining his PGDM (MBA), he joined the Anand Group of companies. The Anand Group is a leading player in the automotive component industry, with collaborations with entities such as Dana Corporation, Maremont, Purolator and Federal-Mogul. During his 7 years in this Group, Raghavan was given increasing responsibilities in product and marketing management, sales, exports and overseas projects. He developed export markets for the Group’s products in Africa, the Middle East and S E Asia, and was also a part of the Chairman’s advance team for establishing JV’s overseas for manufacture of automotive components.
He subsequently joined Sundram Fasteners, a part of the TVS Group of companies. Here, towards the end of his tenure, Raghavan was responsible for all commercial functions – marketing, sales (domestic and international) and strategic purchasing - for the fasteners business. He played a lead role in the company becoming a global player in fasteners, and also achieving single-source status for Just in Time (JIT) supply of radiator caps to 2 General Motors (GM) assembly plants in the US – a “first” for the Indian industry at that time.
After 11 years at Sundram Fasteners, Raghavan joined Delphi Automotive Systems (a wholly-owned subsidiary of General Motors at that time) in 1995 as CEO, Bangalore Operations. He set up a green-field project for the manufacture of steering systems, which was recognized for global best practices in operations and quality systems. He then moved to the Delphi India corporate office as Director —Marketing and Planning. He was on the Board of Directors at Delphi India right through the 4 years with that organization. Raghavan joined Ingersoll-Rand (India) in 1999 as Executive Vice President – Air Solutions, India. Based at Bangalore, he was responsible for the Air Solutions (air compressors and air system management services) business and operations in India. He subsequently moved over to head the Strategic Planning function for the company. He was Executive Director and a member of the Board during his entire six year tenure with Ingersoll-Rand (India) between 1999 and 2005. He was also the “champion” for Environment, Safety and Health (ESH) in the Asia Pacific region. Raghavan then served as President at Harita Infoserve, Bangalore – an engineering design firm catering to the design needs of global automotive manufacturers – before taking up a career in consultancy and coaching.
He then joined Sundram Fasteners (for the second time) in April 2007 as Vice President—Business Development. In this position, he was responsible for the company’s M&A activity, as also the company’s operations at Germany (a fastener company acquired from Textron), UK (a precision forging company acquired from Dana Corporation) and China (a wholly-owned fastener and precision machining company). He held this responsibility till October 2008, when he left the services of Sundram Fasteners to take up his consulting, teaching and writing career once again.