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TORONTO: Finally, an Indian-origin person is becoming CEO of Canada’s top financial institution.
Bharat Masrani, who is in charge of the bank’s US personal and commercial banking operations, will take over as the CEO of TD Trust – which is Canada’s top bank – from Nov 1.
It will be the first time that a person of Indian origin becomes the head of a bank in Canada. Currently, Sarabjit Marwah , who is the number two in Scotiabank in Toronto, is the highest-ranking Indian in corporate Canada.
But 56-year-old Bharat Masrani, who was born in Uganda to Indian parents, will now be the top Indian in corporate Canada when he takes the reins of the country’s top bank.
Masrani, who has been with TD Trust since 1987, started his career as a Commercial Lending Trainee where he rose to Account Manager, Commercial Accounts in 1988. He progressed through a number of positions and responsibilities before assuming the role of Vice President and Head, Corporate Banking Canada.
In 1996, he was appointed Vice President and Country Head for India and then to Senior Vice President, Corporate Finance and Co-Head in Europe in 1997.
In 1999, Bharat also served as Senior Vice President and Chief Executive Officer of TD Waterhouse Investor Services in Europe. Prior to his current position, Bharat was Vice Chair and Chief Risk Officer, Corporate Office, TD Bank Financial Group.
Bharat Masrani, who earned his Bachelor of Administration with Honours in 1978 and then his MBA in 1979 from York University’s Schulich School of Business, currently lives in Portland, Maine, with his wife Shabnam and two children.
“As we look to the future, the Board is confident that Bharat’s leadership, breadth of experience and global business insight will serve him well,” TD Trust chairman Brian Levitt said in a statement on Wednesday.
Outgoing CEO Ed Clark said, “Bharat brings a continuity of strategy, culture and values. I am extremely confident in the future of TD.”
The TD Board opted for Masrani for the top job because of his excellent execution of his boss Ed Clark’s strategies in the US where acquisitions of many banks, including those of Commerce Bancorp for more than $8-billion and some Florida banks, made TD Trust as one of the top ten banks in the US. In fact, the bank has more branches in the US (over 1,300) than in Canada (1,100).