Former ambassador to China Gautam Bambawale joins Ola

  • Bambawale is the second IFS officer to join private sector
  • He was also high commissioner to Pakistan and ex-ambassador to Bhutan

Elizabeth Roche
Updated26 Feb 2020, 04:57 PM IST
A file photo of Gautam Bambawale.
A file photo of Gautam Bambawale.

NEW DELHI: Former Indian ambassador to China Gautam Bambawale has joined Ola, one of the world’s largest ride-hailing companies, as senior adviser for corporate and international affairs.

A former high commissioner to Pakistan and ex-ambassador to Bhutan, Bambawale is the second Indian foreign service officer to join the private sector after S Jaishankar.

Jaishankar, currently the foreign minister, had joined India’s Tata Group as its president in global corporate affairs on his retirement as foreign secretary in 2018. He was appointed foreign minister after the Bharatiya Janata Party won the general elections.

Bambawale who joined Ola on 6 January, is expected to play a key role in advising Ola in its expansion plans into markets like the UK, Australia and New Zealand.

“Ola has driven transformational growth for India’s mobility ecosystem and created deep social and economic impact in its journey of just under a decade,” Bambawale was quoted as saying in a statement by Ola. “As the company builds on its endeavour to build mobility, not just for India but for consumers globally, Ola’s philosophy of collaborating with local governments and communities will only help it build more relevant and sustainable solutions for users and drivers. I am excited to join Bhavish and the Ola team in this journey of becoming an institution that is globally respected and is a hallmark of collaboration.”

Bambawale, who has served in Hong Kong, Guangzhou besides Germany, has been in the Indian foreign service for more than 30 years. As head of the East Asia desk in the Indian foreign ministry he was responsible for boosting India’s ties with Japan, South Korea and Mongolia besides China.

Bhavish Aggarwal, co-founder and CEO, Ola welcomed Bambawale a senior advisor to Ola. “His experience in international relations and diplomacy from his three decades of service to the nation will play an invaluable role in Ola’s next phase of growth across global markets,” Aggarwal was quoted as saying in the company statement.

"In our mission to build mobility for a billion people, we also have the opportunity to build a global brand that every Indian can be proud of. I look forward to working closely with Gautam as we build Ola into a globally respected mobility company,” he added.

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First Published:26 Feb 2020, 04:57 PM IST
HomeNewsIndiaFormer ambassador to China Gautam Bambawale joins Ola

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