GAUTAM KAJIChairman, Centennial Group and Chairman, Advisory Board of the Emerging Markets Forum
Mr. Kaji is the Chairman of the Centennial Group, a strategic advisory firm created by internationally recognized figures from the public and private sectors. The firm provides high – level policy and strategic advice to top business executives and senior public officials on how to derive maximum benefits while minimizing risks from opportunities in today’s global economy.
Mr. Kaji currently serves on the Board of Directors of listed and privately held companies including:
- The Cabot Corp.
- Boston MA
- The Infrastructure Development Finance Co. Ltd., India
- HCL Perot Systems, Inc., Netherlands
- Synergy Power Co. Ltd., Hong Kong
- Washington Asset Management, Inc., Washington, D.C.
In addition, he has provided services to a number of private institutions such as J.P. Morgan since leaving the World Bank. In a career spanning almost 30 years in economic and development policy formulation and implementation with the World Bank, Gautam S. Kaji played a key role in helping the institution meet the development needs of its more than 180 member nations. In the process, he earned a worldwide reputation as a leading expert on global economic and financial issues. When he retired from the World Bank in November 1997, Mr. Kaji was Managing Director for Operations, with specific responsibility for the institution’s programs in Asia and Africa. He also chaired the Operations Committee, which reviews all projects put forward for Bank support and served as co-chair of the Private Sector Development Group, which encompasses the work of the Bank’s private-sector affiliates, IFC and MIGA, as well as the IBRD itself. In addition, he was a member of the Bank’s Executive Committee, the core senior management team guiding the strategic direction of the institution.
Earlier, Mr. Kaji served in various operational positions with the Bank – including in Africa, Europe and the Middle East, and as Director for Human Resources. Prior to his appointment as Managing Director in 1994, he was the Bank’s Vice President for operations in East Asia and the Pacific – a region with which he was closely involved for well over a decade. This involvement has allowed him to develop a keen insight into the social, institutional and political considerations that influence practical policy formulation and implementation throughout Asia. He continues to maintain close personal contact with the senior policy makers and business leaders within and outside the region. Before joining the World Bank, Mr. Kaji worked for a number of years in the commercial banking sector in India, Hong Kong, the United Kingdom, and the United States. He has an MBA from the Wharton School of Finance.