Rome was not built in a day but being a part of that story is a delight in itself, believes Shruti Chandra, who could not stop brimming with pride for being a part of India’s success story. From Vibrant Gujarat’s UK delegation to sleepless nights organising Startup India 2016, Shruti is determined in putting in all her due efforts to make India the ultimate investment destination with the ease of doing business.
A double master in management from Sydney, Shruti worked with big names like PWC, before joining Invest India. Bored by the monotony of corporate consultancy routine, Shruti wanted to venture out her own business when she met Mr Deepak Bagla, in the process of her startup networking, which turned things round for her. Shruti was immediately asked to put her startup idea on hold and joined Invest India. Its been a year and She has not regretted that moment.
Invest India which started in 2009 is a JV between DIPP, FICCI and the state governments. The idea behind it is to be the first reference point for all the investment facilitation and promotion. The organization bridges the knowledge gaps or policy issues of the company wanting to invest or expand in India. “The process got accentuated with Modi’s government as the whole mandate of the current government is to increase FDI and ease of doing business”.
Holding an integral position in Invest India, Shruti is the lead on UK investment and deals with retail sector as her primary responsibility and the textiles industry as her secondary area of focus. “As a sectoral expert, you have deep understanding of that sector in terms of policies, regulations etc which act as a guiding light for the investor”, says Shruti, whose job always keeps her on the go and gives her a lot of diverse learning. No two days in her life have been similar which entails from creating briefing documents for dignitaries to resolving issues of clients like H&M, IKEA etc, “A lot of juggling happens, but everything is towards a greater goal, which gives you immense satisfaction of doing something meaningful”.
In order to work in the right direction, having the right mentor holds utmost importance to which Shruti had no hitch to. Apprehensive initially on how senior bureaucrats and politicians would react to being approached by a youngster like her, Shruti held her confidence high. Mentored under the leadership of Mr Deepak Bagla, Invest India inculcated the sense of confidence by throwing her on the deep end despite being an amateur. “Its not about how many grey hair you have, it is about the knowledge that comes out of your mouth”.
As a young employee of Invest India, Shruti played an important role in dealing with major cases ranging from halting of stay order, demanding closure of 2 major M&S stores due to clearance issues, to assisting H&M in getting license to keep the stores open for extended hours. At the moment Shruti is upbeat with her upcoming project with Merlin Entertainment of getting Madame Tussauds in India. She wants to turn this into a successful story to begin with for working towards the bigger goal of promoting tourism and bringing in more such investments or re investments.
Future plans – “Would like to start something of my own in similar space, but at the moment want to build the knowledge and gain experience on how companies, government and most importantly, people, operate”. In her agenda, is the next foreign investor who needs help to invest in India and get more UK investment.