Alternative Investment

The Capital Quest | Cyrus Mistry car crash: JM Financial PE chief seriously injured, in hospital

Darius Pandole, managing director and CEO of JM Financial Private Equity, the alternative investment platform of the financial services group, was among those travelling with former Tata Sons chief Cyrus Mistry, who died in the road accident on Sunday.

Mistry and Jehangir Pandole, Darius’s brother, were seated at the back seat of the car and lost their lives. Darius, who was in the co-passenger’s seat, and his wife, Anahita, who was driving, were seriously injured.

Jehangir was also from the financial services business domain and was working with KPMG in the UK. The Pandoles and Mistry were childhood friends.

Darius Pandole and his wife were being treated at a hospital in Vapi and were to be airlifted to a hospital in Mumbai, media reports said.

It is not clear how serious is Darius’s condition, though reports said the couple had multiple fractures and other injuries.

Darius had joined the PE firm in August 2016. Prior to JM Financial PE, he was a Partner at New Silk Route Advisors (now renamed Rivendell) for close to nine years.

Prior to NSR, he worked at IDFC PE (later renamed IDFC Alternatives and sold to Investcorp), IndAsia Fund Advisors (the Indian advisor to the AMP-IndAsia India Fund), IndOcean Fund (amongst the earliest PE funds in India as a partnership between Chase Capital Partners and Soros Fund Management).

Before that, Darius managed the operations of his family-owned soft drinks business, Duke and Sons Ltd, which was a market leader in western India. He led the negotiations that culminated in a successful sale of the business to PepsiCo.

Darius holds a Bachelor’s degree in Economics from Harvard University, and an MBA from the University of Chicago.

The accident puts the onus of running the affairs of JM Financial PE, at least temporarily, on the next in command, Siddharth Kothari.

Kothari has been with JM Financial PE since March 2006. He has over 12 years of private equity experience in India. He has been a part of the core investment team since inception, and is currently leading the first fund’s exit initiatives.

He focusses on sectors such as financial, manufacturing and consumer services, and has worked across the investment life cycle. In addition to JM Financial India Fund and Fund II, he has successfully led early-stage investments in financial technology and healthcare services from JM Financial’s proprietary funds.

Prior to the PE firm, Kothari worked at Ernst and Young / Arthur Andersen for close to eight years in taxation and investment structuring advisory services. He holds a Bachelor’s degree in Commerce from Sydenham College, Mumbai University, and is a qualified Chartered Accountant.

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