First working as a global manager for Cadbury Schweppes, then moving to the Tata
Coffee arm of the Tata Group in 2008, Sanjiv Sarin is a man who believes that a company’s
heart must beat for the people around it – particularly for its workers, customers, and
communities. By transforming Tata Coffee to become an outward-focused organization,
Sanjiv has created a unique blend of CSR and profitability.
Through the premiumization of a high-quality product along with the inculcation of
traceability, Sanjiv has created a distinct product – one that has the honor of being the first
Indian Coffee to be added to the Starbucks Reserve. This distinction has also led to a 15%
increase in the company’s profit pool, as well as an 80% increase in the company’s shares,
from 92 Indian Rupees 2015 to 166 in November 2017. These accomplishments have led to
Tata Coffee receiving the India’s Most Trusted Company Award in 2017, and Sanjiv himself receiving the CEO of the Year for the Food and Beverage Industry from the World Quality Congress in the same year.
However, Sanjiv’s accolades are not restricted within the professional realm. Sanjiv
has also fought for those cannot fend for themselves on multiple fronts – not only by
guiding the Tata Group’s CSR programs of addressing clean water shortages and women
empowerment, but also by reviving a projects to create rural entrepreneurs among the
poor. Under Sanjiv’s hand, this initiative has created jobs in 470 districts and 77,000
villages. Sanjiv has also addressed the differently-abled – through a partnership with
Unnati, a school for the poor, 850 young people have completed their education and found
gainful employment. He also sung, with other CEOs, at the Genesis Foundation fundraising
events for poor children diagnosed with cancer and heart problems.
Most importantly, Sanjiv was among those who spearheaded the ‘Jago Re’ campaign,
which began prior to the Indian general elections in 2014. ‘Jago Re’, which means ‘awaken’,
was a call to the women of India to become socially aware, responsible, and empowered by
making them realize the value of their votes and opinions. With the help of key female
personalities such as TV stars, businesswomen and newscasters, Sanjiv was able to reach
out to 1.4 million Indian women. This, among his other women empowerment initiatives,
led him to be awarded the Exceptional Leaders of Excellence award at the Women’s
Economic Forum in 2017.
An exemplar of what it means to be a consummate professional, Sanjiv Sarin will
continue to be a beacon for other young professionals, lighting the way to true excellence.