Pratap Bhanu Mehta, Vice - Chancellor, Ashoka University
Pratap Bhanu Mehta is Vice-Chancellor, Ashoka University. He was previously President, Center for Policy Research. He has been a Professor at Harvard, JNU, the Global Faculty Program at NYU Law School. He has published widely in political theory, constitutional law, society and politics in India, governance and political economy, and international affairs.
His most recent publications include The Oxford Handbook to the Indian Constitution (co-edited with Madhav Khosla and Sujit Choudhary); Rethinking India's Public Institutions (with Devesh Kapur and Milan Vaishnav); Non-Alignment 2.0 (with Srinath Raghavan, Sunil Khilnani et al), The Oxford Companion to Politics in India (with Niraja Jayal); India and Multilateralism (with Bruce Jones and WPS Sidhu) and the Burden of Democracy.
Mehta has also served in a number of policy roles including, Member Convenor of the Prime Minister of India's National Knowledge Comission, Member of the the National Security Advisory Board, Member of the Lyngdoh Committee. He Chairs the Jury for the Holberg Prize.
Mehta has a prolific engagement with public affairs. He is editorial consultant to Indian Express, where he writes a regular column. In addition he has written for the Financial Times, and a number of leading national and international publications. He is on the Editorial Board of American Political Science Review and Journal of Democracy.
Dr Mehta holds a BA (first class) in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics from Oxford and a PhD in politics from Princeton. He received the 2010 Malcom S. Adishehshiah Award and the 2011 Infosys Prize for Social Sciences - Political Science.
Nirav Khambhati, Partner, Kaizen Private Equity
Nirav is a Partner at Kaizen Private Equity, Asia’s first and only fund exclusively focused on education.
Prior to joining Kaizen, Nirav was with the Tata Group for over 20 years in various capacities including as the Chief Executive Officer of Tata ClassEdge and Tata Interactive Systems, Vice President – Chairman’s Office, and Head Telecom Practice – TCS, Asia Pacific. Nirav has led several international projects and collaborations in the fields of telecommunications and aerospace, and served as Director on the Boards of companies within and outside India.
Nirav is an Engineer and MBA (Gold Medalist). He was one of the twelve mid-career professionals selected by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office of the UK for the first batch of the Chevening Rolls-Royce Science and Innovation Leadership Programme at the University of Oxford.
Nirav was recognized as a Young India Leader by the British High Commission in 2013. In 2016, Jagran Lakecity University conferred upon him an Honorary Degree of Doctor of Arts (Management) for his contributions in the space of management, education and technology. Nirav is a member of the Confederation of Indian Industry’s Council for Primary Education.
Krishna Kumar, CEO, Simplilearn Solutions
Ravijot Chugh, Co founder, UpGrad
Ravijot Chugh is the co-founder and heads the product and learning experience at UpGrad. He has previously worked with Housing.com as a product lead and with the Parthenon Group advising multiple companies and private equity investors on the education sector in emerging markets. He also co-founded a social travel startup called 36hrs.in in San Francisco
Ravi holds a Bachelors degree in Computer Science from IIT-Delhi and was part of the Forbes Asia 30 under 30 cohort for 2018.
Lopa Gandhi, Founder, Ugam foundation
Rohit Manglik, CEO, EduGorilla
Srikrishna Ramamoorthy, Partner, Unitus Seed Fund
Imran Jafar, Managing Partner, Gaja Capital
Imran is a Managing Partner at Gaja Capital. Gaja is India’s leading mid-market growth capital firm. Gaja’s aim is to help create India’s next generation of market leaders in sectors such as Education, Consumer, Financial Services and Healthcare.
Imran has 19 years of experience in Private Equity, Pharmaceuticals and Technology services. Prior to Gaja, Imran worked in a variety of roles of increasing responsibility at Dr. Reddy’s and Wipro Technologies.
At Gaja, Imran leads investments in the Education and Consumer clusters. He has been closely involved with Gaja’s investments in Educational Initiatives (Ed-Tech), Kangaroo Kids (Pre-K and K-12), KOOH Sports (Performance Sports), SportzVillage (Youth Sports), EuroKids (Pre-K and K12), John Distilleries (AlcoBev), CL Educate (Supplemental Education) and Indus World Schools (K12).
Imran has post graduate degrees in software engineering from BITS-Pilani and an MBA from IIM-Bangalore.
Prashant Mehta, Partner, Lightbox
Prashant is a Partner at Lightbox, a Mumbai based venture capital firm investing in consumer technology companies.
After an MBA at Wharton, Prashant began his career in finance at Lehman Brothers where he understood the art of investing in emerging markets. Keen to learn more about how technology was changing the world, he moved to Silicon Valley to join Yahoo where he led commercial operations that generated over $150 million in annual revenue.
Having seen the promise of technology in emerging markets, Prashant and his family moved to Mumbai in the midst of the world financial crisis to lead an early stage technology start up – Komli Media. Over the next five years, first as COO and then as CEO, Prashant led an incredibly talented team to position Komli as Asia’s leading advertising technology company. Along the way, they grew revenues 50x and expanded into 10 new international markets.
In 2014, Prashant joined Lightbox. Most recently, he led the $185MM investment commitment from Reliance in AI-platform Embibe. This is the largest AI investment in education any where in the world.
Prachi Windlass, Director, India Programs, Michael & Susan Dell Foundation India LLP
Prachi is a director at Michael & Susan Dell Foundation India LLP. As a member of the leadership team, she manages a portfolio of start-ups, NGOs and large-scale government partnerships. Prachi is on the board of several for-profit education companies and advisory committees to state governments and education departments. She is passionate about the area of data driven education and has spearheaded the foundation’s work in multiple ways, including: incubating service providers, creating role model states for classroom based assessments and embedding student learning based accountability in all portfolio companies.
Before joining the foundation, she orked at Boston Consulting Group in Gurgaon, India and in the telecommunications sector at Qualcomm and Motorola in US. Prachi has a bachelor’s in electrical engineering from Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, a master’s degree from University of Southern California, Los Angeles and MBA from the University of Chicago
Puneet Kothapa, Executive Director, Narayana Group of Educational Institutions
Neeraj Sharma, MD & CEO, Indian School Finance Company
Neeraj Sharma is a Chartered accountant and Cost accountant with 21 years of rich experience across industries. He joined the company in October 2012 from Fullerton India Credit Company Ltd. where he served as Senior Vice President & Head Treasury.
Prior to Fullerton, he worked with AIG Consumer Finance, Ballarpur Industries, Fibcom India (Tellabs JV), Bridgestone India and ACC Limited in various capacities.
V Sivaramakrishnan, Managing Director, Oxford University Press India
Sivaramakrishnan Venkateswaran (Siva) is the Managing Director of Oxford University Press (OUP) ‐ India Branch, with regional responsibilities including Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal and the Middle East.
Siva has extensive experience in the Education Services, e‐commerce, automobile and FMCG domains. In his previous assignment, Siva was Executive President – Education Services at Manipal Global Education Services (MaGE), one the country’s largest privately owned higher education and training services providers. In his seven plus years at MaGE, he successfully led teams to deliver strong business development, improve quality assurance, and expand education and training delivery with supporting technology platforms.
Siva’s wide‐ranging work experience includes running a successful online news, shopping, and gaming portal. He also spent nearly ten years with the Ford Motor Company―including me based in the UK and US―and held various consumer branding roles within Proctor and Gamble.
Siva is a member of the FICCI Higher Education Committee and in the past years has been on the CII Primary Education Council.
He holds a Bachelor in Engineering degree from Bangalore University and is a Post Graduate in Business Management from the Indian Institute of Foreign Trade (IIFT), New Delhi. Siva is a sports enthusiast and follows cricket and soccer keenly. He also likes to watch movies in his spare time.
Zishaan Hayath, Founder, Toppr
Zishaan graduated from IIT Bombay in 2005 with a masters degree in Civil Engineering. His career started with Indian FMCG giant ITC Limited. He later worked with consulting firm Opera Solutions to advise Fortune 100 clients across North America, Europe and Asia. In 2008, Zishaan co-founded Chaupati.com, an e-commerce marketplace, which was acquired by Future Group. He co-founded Toppr in 2013. Today, Toppr is India’s leading online learning app with over 5MM students.
Vamsi Krishna, CEO & Co-founder, Vedantu
Vamsi Krishna is Co-founder of Vedantu, an Ed-Tech startup that offers personalized Live Online Tutoring. Vamsi co-founded Vedantu along with his friends. These are childhood friends who started their first venture in education in 2006 called Lakshya, a Test Prep company in rural Punjab which got acquired by MTEducare, a listed company, in 2012. Vedantu is their second venture together in education. Vedantu was established with the vision of creating a world of learning that is personalized and democratized.
Vamsi completed his B. Tech. from IIT-Bombay in the year 2005 and has been a teacher for more than 6 years. At Vedantu, Vamsi primarily looks after strategy & product roadmap and oversees critical functions like Branding & Marketing. Under his leadership, Vedantu raised USD 5 million in Series A round of funding within just six months of its launch from marquee investors such as Accel Partners and Tiger Global. He has been invited to speak at prestigious conferences such as TEDx Walled City and KINSES 2016 where he presented as one of the winners of EduAwards 2016.
An amateur photographer you can find him clicking in his free time.
Namita Dalmia, Principal, Omidyar Network
Namita is a principal at Omidyar Network where she leads education investments in India. Prior to joining Omidyar Network, Namita spent five years as associate director at Central Square Foundation, where she led the education technology vertical. She helped to incubate and invest in non-profit organizations and partnered with the government.
Previously, Namita was a design analyst at Education Elements, working closely with the engineering and consulting team to design a hybrid learning management system.Before Education Elements, she worked with the National Knowledge Commission, supporting the Prime Minister’s Office to develop policy encompassing education and related areas.
Namita received her MBA from Stanford Graduate School of Business and received a dual degree in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology.
Priya Krishnan, CEO, KLAY
Priya Krishnan is the CEO of one of the most prestigious and trustworthy prep school and day care brands in India. Set up under Founding Years – A multi platform education services organization, KLAY Prep Schools and Daycare in India, caters to children in the age group of 6 months to 10 years.
A business graduate from London Business School, and having worked in various leadership positions with companies like Anderson Consulting and PWC, Priya moved from UK to India with the desire of starting a chain of high quality and trustworthy day care centres in emerging urban hubs which would offer parents and children unparalleled education and care. Her passion to make a difference in the education world was also driven by her vision of enabling women to get back to work by creating learning spaces where they could leave their children on their way to work.
Founded in 2011, KLAY sets the standard for Early Childhood Education - an unforgettable experience of independent learning, creative thinking and strong values for your little one! A proud supporter of women who want to get back to work but have limited options, they have enabled more than 20,000 women and supported them as they pursue their careers.
With over 110 centres and more than 200 corporate tie-ups, they pride themselves on their personalized approach to education and care and are working relentlessly to expand the KLAY footprint across India and to Singapore and Dubai. Under Priya’s leadership, KLAY, has been the recipient of many prestigious awards from Brands Academy, Education Today and Silicon India, for its contributions in the field of education and child care.
A quintessential example of a driven, focused and successful woman entrepreneur, Priya has been recognized as a visionary CEO and trendsetter who defines the framework for this nascent industry.
Pranjal Kumar, Principal, Bertelsmann Investments & Corporate center India