United Spirits appoints Churiwala as new CFO

18th November, 2015 by Amy Hopkins

Diageo’s Indian subsidiary United Spirits has appointed Sanjeev Churiwala as its new chief financial officer as controversy continues to surround the firm.

United Spirits Scotch

Sanjeev Churiwala has taken over as United Spirits’s new CFO

Churiwala officially stepped into the role on 16 November, taking over from Diageo Asia Pacific’s finance director, Vinod Roa, who has been serving as head of finance at United Spirits Limited (USL).

Roa assumed the role after USL’s previous CFO Pathai Ananthasubramanian Murali stepped down in April this year after spending more than 20 years at the company.

Murali, who was also the group’s executive director, resigned from the boards of all USL’s subsidiaries, but no reason was given for his departure.

Churiwala joins USL from LafargeHolcim’s Indian subsidiary, Ambuja Cements, a leading producer of cement, where he worked for about two decades and held the position of CFO since early 2011.

He is a fellow member of The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India, Institute of Company Secretaries of India and Institute of Cost Accountants of India, and holds an Executive MBA from the London Business School.

“I am delighted to welcome Sanjeev to United Spirits and to our executive team,” said Anand Kripalu, managing director of United Spirits.

“His strong track record and depth of experience will serve USL well and we are confident that he will be a key contributor to the achievement of our performance ambition.”

Earlier this month, USL reported an 8% net sales increase in its half-year financial results, boosted by its prestige brands and Diageo’s international labels.

After a series of delays, USL revealed that its full-year financial results for 2013/14 saw a net loss of £445m, with an internal inquiry reporting that funds had been diverted from USL to its former parent company, UB Holdings, headed by Indian billionaire Vijay Mallya.

Mallya also faces losing his position as chairman of USL after the group’s board of directors urged him to step down. It is thought shareholders will vote on Mallya’s future at the company at an AGM later this month.

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