Team

Managing Partner

UDAY GARG
Managing Partner
Uday Garg founded Mandala Capital in 2008 and has since been dedicated exclusively to developing the business with a focus on the Food and Agribusiness sector. Since the firm’s inception, Mr. Garg has been involved in all areas of the business and was instrumental in developing its strategy and vision, as well as raising the current funds under management. He sits on the Boards of portfolio companies and manages the relationships with the firm’s partners and stakeholders.
The inspiration behind food and agriculture as sector focus stems from the influence of Mr. Garg’s late grandfather, Mr. B.R .Barwale, who founded Mahyco, India’s leading seed company, in 1964. Mr. Barwale was a recipient of the World Food Prize in 1998 and has been widely recognized as a leader in the agriculture world with a keen business sense and a deep connection to the Indian farming community.
Prior to Mandala Capital, Mr. Garg worked at Altima Partners (London) focusing on private investments in global Emerging Markets across sectors (including Agribusiness). Mr. Garg began his career in the Investment Banking division of Deutsche Bank (New York), followed by Portfolio Manager roles at Amaranth Advisors (Connecticut) and Duet Group (London).
Mr. Garg holds a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, with a concentration in Finance.
UDAY GARG
Managing Partner

Investment Team

MYRIAM CHANG
Managing Director
Myriam Chang joined Mandala Capital in 2017 from VTB Capital (Singapore), where she was responsible for the bank’s structured lending business in Asia. Ms. Chang had previously acted as a consultant to Mandala on specific projects since 2015. She serves on the Boards of SAFL and EFRAC.
Ms. Chang has over 16 years of experience in Emerging Markets debt and investing across sectors, including liquid debt, structured transactions and special situations. She started her career at Credit Suisse (New York) in Corporate Debt Research, followed by Structured Lending in Latin America and subsequently EEMEA (London), and latterly as Portfolio Manager for EEMEA in a Credit Suisse-backed special situations fund. Prior to joining VTB Capital, Ms. Chang worked at a multi-family office in London, overseeing debt and hybrid opportunities in Emerging Markets.
Ms. Chang holds a B.S. in Economics from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, with a concentration in Finance.
MYRIAM CHANG
Managing Director
ADITYA MODY
Director
Aditya Mody joined Mandala Capital in 2013 from Axis Capital’s Investment Banking Coverage team (Mumbai), where he was part of the Financial Sponsors Group. He is a Director on the Board of JAF and an Observer on the Board of Godavari Biorefineries.
Mr. Mody previous roles within the Axis group include Telecom, Media, and Technology focused equity research, as well as setting up the retail brokerage arm Axis Direct. From 2004 to 2008, Mr. Mody was part of JP Morgan’s Investment Banking Coverage team (Mumbai, London and Hong Kong), with a focus on deal execution in the Telecom, Media, and Technology sectors across the Asia Pacific and EMEA region. Mr. Mody’s other roles include stints at Balmer Lawrie & Co, Bank of India and Talati & Co Chartered Accountants.
Mr. Mody has an MBA in Finance and IT from Narsee Monjee Institute of Management Studies, Mumbai University, and a BCom in Accounting and Computer Sciences from Jai Hind College, Mumbai University.
ADITYA MODY
Director
PRANEET CHAWLA
Vice President
Praneet Chawla joined Mandala Capital in 2016 from Aavishkaar Venture Capital, where he acted as Investment Manager focused on early stage equity investments in Food and Agribusiness, Education, Healthcare, Technology and Renewable Energy in South Asia. He serves as a Director on the Boards of Keventer Agro.
From 2008 to 2012, Mr. Chawla worked at KPMG Transaction Services in Mumbai as a Consultant, where he executed over 25 commercial due diligence and strategy consulting engagements across various sectors including Food and Agriculture, Seeds, Beverages and Telecom. Mr. Chawla has held additional roles as a Software Engineer at Computer Science Corporation, as well as served as an Associate at Perot Systems, an information technology services provider.
Mr. Chawla completed an MBA from Indian Institute of Management (Bangalore) as well as a BE in Electronics and Communications at Punjab Engineering College
PRANEET CHAWLA
Vice President
GAURAV KUMAR
Associate VP
Gaurav Kumar joined Mandala Capital in 2016 from IDBI Capital Market Services, where he was part of the Investment Banking division as a Manager, focused on M&A and private equity transactions across the Pharmaceuticals and Financial Services sectors, working on both deal origination and execution and providing support to the Structured Finance division. From 2007 to 2008, Mr. Kumar worked at Accenture Services (India) as an Associate Software Engineer. He is a Director on the Board of EFRAC and an Observer on the Boards of Gati Kausar and Keventer Agro.
Mr. Kumar completed an MBA from NMIMS (Mumbai) as well as a BTech in Mechanical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (Banaras Hindu University).
GAURAV KUMAR
Associate VP
SHRUTI NAIR
Impact Manager
Dr. Shruti Nair joined Mandala Capital in 2018 to manage the impact created by our portfolio companies.
Prior to Mandala, Dr. Nair worked as part of the Impact & ESG team for Aavishkaar Venture Capital managing impact for early and growth stage equity investments across various sectors in India, South and Southeast Asia.
Dr. Shruti has been a faculty member at the SP Jain Institute of Management and Research and led the team at the Institute’s Centre for Excellence of the Development Sector. She has also worked as a journalist in both print and broadcast news media and has over 10 years of experience in communication and the social impact space.
Dr. Shruti has a PhD in Media and Communication Studies, specializing in Communication Technology for Development from Florida State University, and also holds a Master’s degree in Mass Communication from Nanyang Technological University, Singapore.
SHRUTI NAIR
Impact Manager

Sector Specialists

HITEN VARIA
Supply Chain, Sales, Technology
Hiten Varia is a serial entrepreneur and technology evangelist, currently serving as Chairman and Founder at M9 Solutions. Previously, Mr. Varia spent 17 years in executive leadership roles at i2 Technologies, a supply chain management software and services company, including Chief Customer Officer and Executive Vice President of Global Customer Operations. Prior to joining i2 Technologies, he worked at Sylvex Cable, followed by 10 years in several management roles at EDS.
Mr. Varia serves as a Director on the Boards of Gati Kausar and EFRAC.
Mr. Varia holds an M.S. in Computer Architecture and Software Design from University of Kentucky and a B.S. in Electrical Engineering from University of Baroda.
HITEN VARIA
Supply Chain, Sales,
Technology
BOON LING YEE
Retail
Boon Ling Yee has over 25 years of experience in the Retail sector across Asia, with a focus on Food and Beverages. From 2009 to 2016 she worked as a Commercial Consultant for Kimberly Clark China, Watsons Singapore, Reliance Retail India, CP Lotus China, Kimberly Clark Indonesia and The Bakery Depot. Prior to that, Ms. Yee worked for Tesco Stories Plc starting as International Category Director in the United Kingdom, followed by Trading Director for Grocery and Corporate Purchasing for Tesco Lotus Thailand and Commercial Director (Non-Food) for Tesco China.
From 1993 to 2003 Ms. Yee worked for PepsiCo Foods International in various roles, including Business Development in establishing Frito Lay distribution in Non-Equity Markets across Asia Pacific and Regional Key Account Director, where she was responsible for managing four global key accounts for the Asia Pacific region – Carrefour, Walmart, 7-Eleven and Tesco. From 1992 to1993 Ms. Yee worked for Malaysia Dairy Industries as a Product Manager. She serves as an Observer on the Board of Keventer Agro.
Ms. Yee holds a BBA from National University of Singapore and an MBA also from NUS (the last semester of which was completed at UCLA).
BOON LING YEE
Retail

Operations

GOPAL ARJUN
COO
Gopal Arjun joined Mandala Capital in 2014 from Network18, a media and entertainment group, where he acted as CFO and managed the company’s listing process in the U.S., as well as the finance, reporting and compliance process. From 2005 to 2007, Mr. Arjun worked at Infrasoft Technologies, a leading banking products and solutions software company in Mumbai, also as CFO, where he handled M&A transactions and capital raising. From 2002 to 2005, he was with Lionbridge Technologies (a leading software and ITES company) and eVentures India (a venture capital firm) as CFO. Mr. Arjun’s other roles include stints at ASK Raymond James (a multinational brokerage and investment company), Merck India Limited (a Fortune 500 pharmaceutical and chemicals company) and Baron Electronics (consumer electronics).
Mr. Arjun completed an MBA at IGNOU and a BCom at the University of Mumbai. He is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.
GOPAL ARJUN
COO
SHYAM NAMDEV
Deputy CFO
Shyam Namdev joined Mandala Capital in 2018. He has 13 years of experience across the finance function, accounting, financial control and working capital management across multi-division and multi-location businesses. Mr. Namdev also has experience in treasury and tax.
Mr. Namdev most recently served as Vice President Finance for Thinkcell Learning Solutions Private Limited. Prior to that, he worked as AGM – Finance and Accounts of TV18 Broadcast Limited. He also had a long association with other group companies of Network18.
Mr. Namdev is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. He holds a Master’s degree in Commerce from Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya, Indore.
SHYAM NAMDEV
Deputy CFO
YATISH TOTLA
Finance Controller
Yatish Totla joined Mandala Capital in 2016 from PMP Auto Components, an associate company of the Ashok Piramal Group, where he was Deputy General Manager overseeing the MIS and Audit functions. From 2010 to 2013, Mr. Totla worked as Manager of Finance & Accounts at Reliance Globalcom, the foreign operational arm of Reliance Communications which provides data and network management services across the world. He also worked from 2006 to 2010 at Pantaloon Retail India as Asst. Manager of Finance & Accounts.
Mr. Totla completed his BCom at the MDS University, Rajasthan, and is a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India.
YATISH TOTLA
Finance Controller
RITA EUSTACE
Office Manager
Rita Eustace joined Mandala Capital in 2016 from First Voyager Advisors, where she worked as Administration Officer and Front Desk Executive. From 2007 to 2009 Ms. Eustace worked as Front Desk Executive with DSP Merrill Lynch, and from 2003 to 2006 as Front Desk Executive and administrative assistant with Amines & Plasticizers Ltd. Previously, she worked as Front Desk Executive with Sharepro Services, a unit of Larsen & Toubro Limited.
Ms. Eustace holds a BCom from the University of Mumbai.
RITA EUSTACE
Office Manager

Senior Advisors

RAJU BARWALE
Mr. Raju Barwale has been associated with Maharashtra Hybrid Seed Company Pvt. Ltd. (Mahyco) since 1978, and has recently taken over as Executive Chairman from February 2018.
Founded in 1964, Mahyco is the flagship company of the Barwale Group and a leading and one of the most respected agri-biotech companies in the country today. It was founded by Dr. B.R. Barwale to address the gaps in quality seed development in India, a vision that has been furthered and refocused since Mr. Barwale took over as Executive Chairman.
Mr. Barwale’s foresight was the driving force behind Mahyco’s partnership with Monsanto in the 1990s in order to introduce Bt technology into Indian agriculture. Mr. Barwale was convinced that the technology would help farmers successfully counter the bollworm scourge in cotton crops, a belief that is borne out by the results shown in Bt cotton. In 2002, Mahyco became the pioneer to introduce the India’s first and largely successful biotech crop – Bt cotton. By 2010, India had become the second largest producer of cotton in the world with more than 93 per cent cotton cultivation being Bt cotton. This was possibly the 2nd most significant event in the history of Indian agriculture after the Green Revolution. India became a net exporter of cotton from being a net importer prior to the introduction of Bt technology.
Bt brinjal is another important application of this breakthrough technology by Mahyco under the leadership of Mr. Barwale, and one that was poised to be the first GM food for India. It passed several important regulatory requirements with a great promise in controlling the fruit and shoot borer (FSB) pest, a common yield-reducing affliction in brinjal plants.
Mr. Barwale has helped build and nurture the exciting research pipeline at Mahyco laboratories. The company is now focusing on developing and applying molecular marker technology, which requires less research time and allows products to be brought to market faster. Mr. Barwale has also initiated research work on drought and salinity resistant crops, disease and pest resistance, improved weed management and nitrogen-use efficient crops.
Mr. Barwale’s success in steering Mahyco’s course and positively impacting the hybrid seed industry have gained him international and national recognition. In 1994, he was appointed a member of the Oil and Fibre Seed Section Committee of I.S.F. Switzerland. He was also a member of the Joint Apex Committee of the Indo-Swiss collaborations on Biotechnology, a collaborative effort of the governments of India and Switzerland. In addition, he was a member of Protection of Plant Varieties and Farmers’ Rights Authority (PPV & FRA) within the Indian Ministry of Agriculture and The National Agricultural Innovation Project, under the aegis of the Government of India and the World Bank.
Mr. Barwale is on the Board of Directors of several companies and trusts. He has travelled extensively, is an active Rotarian and has held many positions in Rotary International.
RAJU BARWALE
SEKHAR NATARAJAN
Sekhar Natarajan is the founder and Managing Partner of S N Consultants for strategic consulting in the Ag space. He has been actively advising several Indian and multinational companies including private equity players since 2010.
Mr. Natarajan is a career professional with high integrity and passion for results. He retired from Monsanto after a long 30-year journey with them. He built and lead Monsanto India as an organization that was acknowledged as a growth leader in Indian Agriculture. He helped create and manage a multi-organization partnership to give a significant and positive impact to the ag-biotech acceptance and cotton landscape of India. He is a strategic thinker with rich global experience in business development and M&A. Mr. Natarajan is recognized as a leader who has developed and nurtured talent for Monsanto and the Ag sector in India.
He holds Board positions with: Monsanto India Ltd. (Chairman and Director), Ingersoll Rand (India) Limited (Director), Seedworks International Private Limited (Director), Maharashtra Hybrid Seed Company Pvt. Ltd. (Director), Accelya Kale Solutions Limited (Director).
SEKHAR NATARAJAN
BARRY SCHIFFMAN
Barry Schiffman has been a close advisor to Mr. Garg since Mandala Capital’s inception. He has also been closely involved in fundraising and providing legal advice and support.
Mr. Schiffman was co-founder of Next Frontier Capital Ltd, an Emerging Markets private equity and investment advisory firm. He was also co-founder, COO, Director, and General Counsel at Viewdle (acquired by Google), and worked for The Frayman Group, Outpoint Capital Management, Bracewell and Giuliani LLP and Fulbright and Jaworski LLP. Mr. Schiffman has served on the Boards of various private companies and is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Mandala Capital.
Mr. Schiffman is a graduate of Georgetown University, Magna Cum Laude, and Georgetown University Law Center. He is a member of the State Bar of New York.
BARRY SCHIFFMAN
S.S. THAKUR
Shri Shobha Singh Rajaram Singh Thakur has a long professional career in the fields of banking, foreign exchange and capital markets. He was the Controller of Foreign Exchange, Reserve Bank of India, Chairman of HDFC Bank and Senior Advisor of United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). With wide professional expertise in banking and foreign exchange, Shri S.S. Thakur joined the UN International Civil Service in January 1988 as Senior Advisor, UNDP and worked in Zambia under an UN Assignment for 6 years. Subsequently, he became the Chairman of HDFC Bank.
Shri S.S. Thakur has extensive experience of central banking functions covering, among others, management of foreign exchange, exchange rate and external debt, regulation and monitoring of external trade financing, foreign technical collaboration, foreign equity investment and exchange market development. In his capacity as a Senior UN Adviser, Shri S.S. Thakur played a key role in designing and implementing market-oriented monetary, foreign exchange, banking, exchange rate, external debt and trade related policies of Bank of Zambia as part of Zambia’s structural adjustment programme. His UN Assignment resulted in major relaxations (in several cases total abolition) of exchange controls on current and capital account transactions and contributed significantly to various monetary policy and banking reforms.
Shri S.S. Thakur was the founder Chairman of HDFC Bank, a highly reputed private sector commercial Bank promoted by the Housing Development Finance Corporation (HDFC). He was associated with HDFC Bank as its Chairman for approximately seven years and played a key role in formulating policies and business strategies to achieve high standards and best practices in terms of product offerings and service levels.
Shri S.S. Thakur also has extensive exposure in capital market related areas. He worked as a Public Interest Director on the Governing Board of Bombay Stock Exchange for five years and was the Chairman of Central Depository Services (India) Limited for over nine years. Currently, he is an Independent Director on the boards of several companies.
S.S. THAKUR