V.Sumantran one of the personalities instrumental in helping Ashok Leyland enter the Light Commercial Vehicle (LCV) segment, has resigned as executive vice-chairman of Hinduja Automotive Ltd and also from the board of the company. His last day in office will be on the March 31, 2014. He will though continue to serve the Hinduja Group in the capacity of an advisor.
Dr Sumantran has overseen the launch of models like Dost SCV, Stile MPV, Partner truck and MiTR bus all of which have had a good response from the market.
L-R: MS Dhoni with Ashok Leyland vice chairman V Sumantran and ALL executive director (LCV) Nitin Seth at the Stile launch
The automobile industry is abuzz with rumoursthat Sumantran has resigned to fill in the gap created by the untimely death of Tata Motors CEO Karl Slym for which he is viewed as one of the top contenders. Sumantran has previously worked with Tata as head of its Engineering & Research Centre from 2001 to 2005. However, he has categorically stated in his resignation that he wants to pursue interests in academia, research and consulting. It though remains to be seen if he will rejoin Tata Motors or not.
V Sumantran said: ''When I had joined the Board, getting Ashok Leyland into the LCV business wasa major objective. Now, with the launch of the Partner and Mitr, we have seen completion of the firstphase of our cooperation with Nissan. This was a suitable juncture for me to look to pursuing otherinterests, including some work with academia, research and consulting. I have the privilege to work witha phenomenally motivated and accomplished team, supportive share-holders and highly experiencedBoard colleagues and management. I wish them every success in the years ahead.''
|Hinduja Automotive Ltd., the holding company of Ashok Leyland Ltd., announced the intent of Dr. V Sumantran, Executive Vice-Chairman to step down from the Board and this would become effective from 31 March 2014. Dr. Sumantran has also stepped down from his position on the Board of Ashok Leyland Ltd. However, he will continue as advisor to the Hinduja Group, while he pursues his interests in academia, research and consulting. Dr. Sumantran, among many responsibilities, had overseen the LCV business of Ashok Leyland, through their Joint-Venture with Nissan. Over the past few years, Ashok Leyland had launched a new range of products including the successful Dost SCV, the award-winning Stile and most recently, the Partner LCV truck and MiTR LCV Bus launched nationally at the Auto Expo last month. Dheeraj Hinduja, Co-Chairman, Hinduja Automotive Ltd said: ''Dr. Sumantran has played a key role in expanding Ashok Leyland's product range and new businesses and in creating a strong partnership with Nissan. I have greatly valued his vast experience, knowledge and his advice over the past several years. I wish him all success in his new pursuits.'' Dr. Sumantran said: ''When I had joined the Board, getting Ashok Leyland into the LCV business was a major objective. Now, with the launch of the Partner and Mitr, we have seen completion of the first phase of our cooperation with Nissan. This was a suitable juncture for me to look to pursuing other interests, including some work with academia, research and consulting. I have the privilege to work with a phenomenally motivated and accomplished team, supportive share-holders and highly experienced Board colleagues and management. I wish them every success in the years ahead.''|