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P Santhosh Takes the Helm as MD & CEO of NARCL

The National Asset Reconstruction Company (NARCL), India’s state-owned bad bank, has appointed P Santhosh as its new Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer. The decision was made by NARCL’s board, which recommended Santhosh for a three-year term at the helm of the asset reconstruction company.

Interim Leadership to Permanent Role

Santhosh’s appointment comes after he served as NARCL’s acting CEO since January 2024, following the unexpected departure of N Sundar before the completion of his term. Santhosh stepped in to fill the leadership void, and his performance during this interim period seems to have impressed the board, leading to his recommendation for the top job.

Experienced Banker with Stressed Asset Resolution Expertise

P Santhosh brings a wealth of experience to NARCL, having previously held the position of Chief General Manager at Canara Bank, one of the sponsor institutions of the asset reconstruction company. His familiarity with the banking sector and expertise in stressed asset resolution make him well-suited for the challenging task of reviving distressed assets acquired by NARCL.

Rigorous Selection Process

NARCL initiated a comprehensive selection process in mid-April, inviting applications from senior managers with at least ten years of experience in stressed asset resolution. The company’s ambition to gradually acquire stressed assets valued at around ₹2 Lakh Crore necessitated the appointment of a seasoned professional to spearhead these efforts.

Hitting the Ground Running

According to reports, NARCL actively began acquiring distressed assets shortly after Santhosh assumed the interim leadership role. Media sources indicate that the bad bank has already purchased 18 accounts with outstanding loans amounting to ₹92,500 Crore as of March 31, 2024, demonstrating its commitment to addressing the issue of non-performing assets (NPAs) in the banking sector.

Building on Past Leadership

Santhosh’s appointment follows in the footsteps of senior bankers who have previously led NARCL. The asset reconstruction company’s past two Managing Directors and Chief Executive Officers were Sundar and Padmakumar Nair, both seasoned professionals from the State Bank of India (SBI).

As NARCL continues its mission to resolve India’s stressed assets, the appointment of P Santhosh as MD & CEO signals a renewed focus on leveraging experienced leadership to navigate the complexities of the bad bank’s operations. With his background in banking and stressed asset resolution, Santhosh is well-positioned to drive NARCL’s efforts and contribute to the overall health of the financial sector.

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