Baring India loses another founding member

Akhil Awasthi will join Tata Capital as head of private equity. His departure follows that of Subbu Subramaniam two months ago.

Akhil Awasthi, a partner and founding member of Baring Private Equity Partners India, has left the firm to join Tata Capital as its head of private equity.

Awasthi’s departure follows the recent resignation of Subbu Subramaniam, another Baring India founding member. Subramaniam quit Baring India this August over differences with fellow co-founder Rahul Bhasin, the firm’s managing partner, according to Indian media reports at the time.

Awasthi’s new role is a natural progression for his career, according to a Baring India spokeswoman.

Akhil Awasthi

“Like all leading firms in the every industry, seniors from Baring India will always be sought out to lead newer initiatives in the field,” Bhasin said in a statement.

Amit Chander will replace Awasthi as Baring India’s healthcare, education and information technology portfolio head, the spokeswoman said, adding Chander has been in his new role for the last few weeks.

Chander was previously the firm’s head of investments in the pharmaceutical, healthcare and education sectors. He has worked alongside Awasthi on healthcare and education investments. 

Presently, Baring India manages assets of more than $1 billion across three India-focused funds. Its latest fund, Baring India Private Equity Fund III, closed on $550 million in 2008.

At Tata Capital, Awasthi will replace Shailendra Bhandari, who quit the firm “to pursue other opportunities” this July, less than a year after he joined. Tata Capital is in the market for a sector-agnostic fund, which is targeting commitments of $350 million.

To date, Tata Capital has been a direct private equity investor, focusing on growth capital and selective late stage venture and buyout investments. Last year, the firm launched its private equity business and disclosed plans to raise capital from external investors. It would raise a “composite mix of sector agnostic and sectorally aligned funds”, it said at the time.