the development and private sectors
Pooja Taparia is Founder and Chief Executive of Arpan, an NGO based in Mumbai with a mission to prevent the occurrence of Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) and heal those who have been affected by it. She started work on CSA in 2006 and has grown the team from 3 to 60 professionals (the largest team in India) who run various activities, workshops, teaching, training and counseling services to deal with CSA. She’s also mobilized over 2 million USD (14 cr) for working on CSA.
Pooja is a graduate in Applied Art/Graphic Design and in Commerce. Coming from a business family she is an entrepreneur, having invested considerable time in setting up her family business and managing a number of high-profile freelance design print and web media projects for companies and individuals.
Arpan has so far helped over 100,000 children and adults directly through its services and 300,000 individuals indirectly through trainings and advocacy. Arpan has won multiple awards for its exemplaray work and high organisationsal standards including the India NGO Award 2011, Global NGO Excellence Award 2015 and the Dasra Girl Power Award 2014-15.
Pooja has been awarded the Architects of the Future Award 2013-14 and her life work has been permanently put up as a part of the Waldzell Collection, in the Melk Abbey, a museum in Austria.
An MBA from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management, Akhil Shahani's twin areas of focus are education and entrepreneurship. His family has been in the education sector for over sixty years, and he continues to fly the flag high. As the Director of the Shahani Group, Mr. Shahani is trying to bring international methods of management education to India through the group's various initiatives. He believes that a good management education involves not only academic learning, but also developing one's network, personality and values. Apart from his work with the many educational institutions run by the family, he is also involved with the Kaizen Management Advisors Pvt. Ltd., a Private Equity firm investing in education and also mentors young entrepreneurs in his spare time. He is also the recipient of many awards like the Bharat Shiromani Award, the Bharat Gaurav Award and the Indira Gandhi Priyadarshini Award including mentions in notable educational journals.
Shalaka Joshi is an impact investing professional with 13+ years of global leadership experience in social venture, financial inclusion, livelihoods and market-based solutions to poverty in emerging markets, especially in Asia.
Shalaka’s social enterprise career began with UNICEF where she worked on microplanning and building public- private-non profit alliances. She also worked with Ashoka, a global association of the world's leading social entrepreneurs. Her private sector experience includes ICICI Bank - India's largest private sector bank - where she led the process of integrating private sector partners into the Bank's initiatives in health, education and micro finance.
Shalaka has played a key role in building the field of impact investing globally. She was part of the Founding team at the IFMR Trust, a for-profit social enterprise dedicated to building financial inclusion for low-income individuals and enterprises in India. Shalaka also served as a Managing Director of Unitus Impact- an early-stage impact investing fund which supports the growth of scalable livelihood ventures in Asia. Over the last couple of years, Shalaka served as the Managing Director of Toniic- the world’s most active network of impact investors, supporting social ventures and funds across 28 countries. She led Toniic’s expansion into the AsiaPacific region and as its Chief Investment Officer globally, across asset classes.
A Chevening scholar, and 2014 winner of the Africa-Asia-Middle East Women’s Leadership award, Shalaka advises and mentors several start-ups- both for-profits and non-profits. She also serves as a Board Director for Toniic Global (which seeks to move millions of dollars of capital into impact investing), for the India Entrepreneurship Foundation (which works with Indian State governments to mainstream commercial and social entrepreneurship) and as an Advisor to UnLtd, India (a leading incubator for social entrepreneurs) and Sankhya Partners (the world’s first fund focused on gender lens investing). She is based out of Mumbai, India and enjoys poetry, travel and dance.
Jayesh Parekh is a Managing Partner at Jungle Ventures, a Pan-Asian Venture Capital fund. He was one of the Founders of Sony Entertainment Television, a major television network launched in collaboration with Sony Japan. He is a board member of Sanctum Wealth Management, One Animation (animation & special effects), Picdot (Flickbay: Bollywood App) and Milaap (crowd-sourced lending platform).
Jayesh is an active impact investor, and has investments in various Venture Capital funds in Silicon Valley and start-up enterprises across the broad technology and digital media space. He spent over 12 years at IBM in various technical and sales positions based in Houston and Singapore, and part of the team that brought IBM back to India.
Jayesh is on the Board and the Investment Committee of Aavishkaar India II Fund, which is a social impact fund. Jayesh has served on the Board of United Way International for 6 years, and he was on the Board of SONG, a fund owned by Soros, Omidyar Network and Google, which invests in SMEs in India that meet social objectives.
Jayesh holds a Bachelors degree in Electrical Engineering from Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda in India and a Masters degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Texas at Austin. He is an Entrepreneur-in-Residence at INSEAD, a member of TiE Angels, and Indian Angel Network. Jayesh is a Singapore citizen and lives with his family in Singapore.
Secretary-General of the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation from 2001 to 2007, 'Moni' Malhoutra was formerly Assistant Secretary-General of the Commonwealth and later, a member of the Board of Directors of International IDEA - the Institute for Democracy and Electoral Assistance, Stockholm. Educated in Delhi and Oxford, he was a member of the Indian Administrative Service (1961-1978) and served in the Secretariat of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi from 1966 to 1973. He then moved to London to the Commonwealth Secretariat, where he played a leading role in Commonwealth efforts to end apartheid in South Africa.
Pankaj Jain is the Founder at Impact Law Ventures. A corporate lawyer by profession, Pankaj specializes in venture capital and private equity matters, especially in the impact investing and venture philanthropy sector. He is also an ardent advocate of building bridges between law, development and entrepreneurship. He currently advises a number of start-up entrepreneurs, small and growing businesses, social business enterprises, non-profit organizations, impact investors and donor organizations on a range of legal, regulatory and corporate governance issues in India by providing affordable access to a trusted and competent legal counsel.
Prior to founding his independent law practice in early 2011, Pankaj worked in-house as the India counsel for Acumen, a non-profit social venture capital fund and was involved in working across agriculture, healthcare, water, housing and energy portfolios as well as structuring transactions in the social development space. Prior to joining Acumen Fund, he worked as an associate with the Indian law firm AZB & Partners in New Delhi on corporate advisory and private equity transactional matters. He received an integrated B.A., LL.B. (Hons.) degree in arts and law from NALSAR University of Law, Hyderabad, Andhra Pradesh, India where he graduated as the university first rank holder and was a recipient of 11 gold medals. Pankaj was admitted to the Bar Council of Delhi in 2006, and is qualified to practice law in India. He is a regular speaker at a number of conferences and also delivers guest lectures and training workshops at a number of law, management and engineering schools in India. Pankaj likes to read, write, travel and meditate."