India’s largest stock exchange NSE seeks new chief amid alleged governance lapses

MUMBAI, March 4 (Reuters)India’s National Stock Exchange (NSE), the country’s largest stock exchange, began searching for a new chief executive on Friday as it grapples with accusations of governance failures that have long delayed an initial public offering. (IPO).

The effort comes after the market regulator penalized former chief executive Chitra Ramkrishna, among others, following an investigation that showed she sought advice for years from a stranger she described like a Himalayan yogi.

In a newspaper advertisement, the ESN specified that candidates must have a “record of strengthening corporate governance” and a minimum of 25 years of experience.

Leading an organization through an IPO will be an added benefit, added the ad, which showed executive search firm Korn Ferry assisting in the task.

The NSE did not immediately respond to a request from Reuters for comment on the ad.

India’s market regulator said NSE and its board were aware of the interactions with the controversial adviser but chose to “keep the matter secret”.

In response to public criticism, NSE said it was “committed to the highest standards of governance and transparency”, and described the issue as “almost six to nine years old”.

The exchange’s plan to go public in 2017 was derailed by accusations that some officials provided high-frequency traders with unfair access to speed up algorithmic trading.

Its current chief executive, Vikram Limaye, is due to complete his five-year term in July.

(Reporting by Abhirup Roy; Editing by Aditya Kalra and Clarence Fernandez)

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Helen D. Jessen