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What you didn’t know about Sandeep Bakhshi, ICICI Bank Chief

Oct 11, 2020, 03:20 IST
Business Insider India
Sandeep Bakhshi ICICI Bank MD & CEOHindu Business Line

Sandeep Bakhshi, ICICI Bank's MD & CEO, is a staunch believer in creating value for all stakeholders. Under his leadership, the bank has been following the guiding philosophy of 'Fair to Customer, Fair to Bank', emphasizing the need to deliver on the promise of a fair value proposition for customers while effectively increasing shareholder value. Under his leadership, ICICI Bank is poised to emerge even stronger as a trusted financial service provider to its customers.

Below are some interesting details about Bakhshi and his journey to becoming Managing Director & CEO of ICICI Bank, one of the country's leading banks.

Sandeep Bakhshi’s early career with ICICI Group

Sandeep Bakhshi has been working with the ICICI Group for over the past three decades. He joined the erstwhile Industrial Credit and Investment Corporation of India (ICICI) Ltd in 1986.

His rise in ICICI and later other companies in the group, including ICICI Bank, has been steady. He was hand-picked by his mentors — KV Kamath and N Vaghul -- to head different businesses within ICICI.

His work responsibilities included business development, project appraisals, project monitoring, and business restructuring in the initial years. He was handed the charge of risk management for the Northern Zonal office. He subsequently looked after the corporate clients for the Northern and Eastern regions of ICICI.

Journey with insurance subsidiaries

Sandeep Bakhshi came to be known as the man most trusted to handle massive changes and tumultuous phases. He built the general insurance business from scratch, which he joined in 2002.

He was chiefly responsible for grooming the company at a time when the insurance industry was at a nascent stage. Today, ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company is one of the country's largest private sector general insurance companies.

Bakhshi was brought into the Bank in 2009 as Deputy Managing Director to fight rising delinquencies. After he deftly handled it, he was put in charge of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company in 2010.

During his tenure at ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company, Sandeep Bakhshi took charge of digital adoption, which resulted in disruptive changes across the industry. He is credited for taking the first insurance company in the country public.

During Bakhshi's tenure, the Assets under Management (AUM) of ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Company rose to ₹1.4 lakh crore in 2018 from ₹57,319 crore in 2010.

Sandeep Bakhshi ICICI Bank, MD & CEOSandeep Bakhshi

His management style and philosophy

Throughout his career at ICICI Group, Sandeep Bakhshi, the current ICICI Bank CEO, has maintained a customer-first approach, believing that the most vital part of any business is delivering the best products to the customer.

He ardently follows the approach – “Fair to Customer, Fair to Bank” — which balances the importance of giving a fair proposition to customers while ensuring that the bank delivers value to its shareholders and stakeholders. He encourages independent thinking across teams, giving them the space to grow.
Reforms at ICICI Bank under Sandeep Bakhshi’s leadership

Good leaders can infuse organisations with fresh energy. Under Bakhshi’s leadership, the bank has gone through transformative cultural and structural reforms.

He introduced the philosophy of “One Bank, One Team, One Goal” that has brought teams closer by breaking down symbols of hierarchy. These changes have been swift, decisive, and effective.

Hobbies and interests

Sandeep Bakhshi is a fan of vintage Bollywood, particularly old Hindi songs, and is a fan of SD Burman, OP Nayyar, and Madan Mohan. He also enjoys wildlife parks and visits around five to six sanctuaries a year.
Leadership with passion

His three decades at ICICI Group have only made him more passionate about his work. In an interview, Sandeep Bakhshi had said, “Every day I believe that I am in ICICI because I need ICICI. ICICI can get a 100 Sandeep Bakhshis, but for me, there is no better opportunity than ICICI.

He knows the organisation inside-out and has the insights needed to guide it smoothly.


Sandeep Bakhshi is a mechanical engineer from Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, and has a postgraduate degree in management from XLRI, Jamshedpur. He grew up in a defense services family.
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