Business Today

Cover story | Nov 25, 2012

Are Indian CEOs overpaid?

Are Indian CEOs overpaid?

A study by global HR consulting and outsourcing firm Aon Hewitt for Business Today on executive compensation for 2011/12 shows the median Indian CEO salary was $3.5 million (about Rs 18.5 crore), versus $7 million in the US, about $6 million in Europe.

Editor's Note

From the Editor: November 25, 2012

Greed is good, as Gordon Gecko said in "Wall Street", but how do you balance lavishly generous pay for people at the top of the corporate ladder, asks Business Today Editor Chaitanya Kalbag.


People business

Starring: BJP President Nitin Gadkari, Suchi Mukherjee, Founder and CEO,, Michael Chertoff, Co-founder, Chertoff Group, Karl Fowler, Founder and CEO, Opus Media Group and Monisha Kaltenborn, Team Principal, Sauber F1 team.

Leadership Spotlight

Leaderspeak with Avinash Vashistha

Avinash Vashistha of Accenture India admires Steve Jobs the most


Mobile phones pushing growth of digital music

The world's largest online music store, iTunes, is yet to open shop in India, but that is not stopping 700 million-odd active mobile users here from enjoying music on their phones.

Indian start-ups chart new path in healthcare

Despite many difficulties, a number of other entrepreneurs are setting up their own ventures to make novel, low-cost medical equipment suited for Indian conditions.

E-tailers find profitable niche in ethnic wear

A few Indian companies are making a killing selling Indian ethnic-wear online. Ethnic designs have always had a market overseas, thanks to tourists and expatriate Indians carrying outfits back with them and generating awareness.

The race to make indigenous chips gathers pace

India was always globally renowned for its semiconductor design services. But a few entrepreneurs are now going several steps ahead to make indigenous chips as well.

IT safety: Can our data survive a disaster?

Hurricane Sandy ravaged the US, forcing corporations to close down data centres. The superstorm once again brought to the spotlight the need to have processes and plans to ensure that a business's critical IT systems continue to run during a technical failure, natural disaster or terrorist attack.

Cabinet reshuffle: Challeneges before new ministers

Following the October 29 Cabinet reshuffle, in all likelihood the last before the general elections of 2014, Business Today looks closely at the challenges before five of them, all holding key economic ministries.

Kingfisher best off staying on the ground?

With the grounded airline accumulating debt of over Rs 13,000 crore and banks unwilling to bail it out, Vijay Mallya is fast running out of options to raise funds required to resume operations.

Chidambaram vs Subbarao: Who will blink first?

Finance Minister P. Chidambaram's public display of annoyance with Reserve Bank of India Governor D. Subbarao indicates the extent of their differences.

'People making too much of FM's response'

A day after his half-yearly monetary policy review, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor Duvvuri Subbarao met with Chaitanya Kalbag and Anand Adhikari to explain the intent of the bank's policy actions.

Bollywood actors turn business savvy

Bollywood's actors putting the finishing touches on a shiny new business model for the century-old Indian film industry. Many own production houses and are increasingly business-savvy risk takers.

Maruti starts price war with new Alto, will it pay off?

Never before has Maruti Suzuki launched a new version at a price below that of its predecessor. The new Alto is Rs 4,000 to Rs 8,000 cheaper than the old one, depending on the variant.


Link Governance With Pay

We have often found HR managers struggling to clearly outline the process of pay decisions at the executive level.


Letters To The Editor

Business Today readers write to the Editor with their feedback on the magazine's coverage.

Best of the lot

BT receives many responses to its case studies. Below is the best one on Havaianas (September 2, 2012).


That Syncing Feeling

From smartphones to 'phablets', it is all a story of digital concurrence


Staffing firms prosper as India Inc hires more temps

The demand for temps, or temporary workers, had been rising for some time, but lately there has been a spike. Reducing or freezing the hiring of permanent employees and making do with temps helps companies cut their fixed costs in a slowing economy.



Once again, India is struggling to contain the outbreak of dengue fever. More than 17,000 cases have been reported across the country and some 100 people have lost lives to dengue this year.

Cabinet Reshuffle: Who said what

Who said what about the latest reshuffle in Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's cabinet -

India's overall deficit will be higher

India's fiscal deficit has grown almost four-fold in the last five years. Government finances are in a disarray largely because of a mounting subsidy and interest payment burden.

Rajat Gupta case: How India can check insider trading

To address the perception that insider trading invariably goes unpunished in India, a few high profile cases should be concluded in as short a time as possible, says  M. Damodaran, a former chairman of the Securities and Exchange Board of India.

India doing better than predictions: Shankar Sharma

Despite many foreign brokers and agencies being bearish on India for nearly all of 2012, it has been among the best performing markets in the world, says the vice chairman and joint managing director of First Global.

Telenor pins hopes on new partner for second innings

Lakshdeep Investments & Finance, Telenor's new India partner, is a financial investment company controlled by Sudhir Vrundavandas Valia, the 56-year-old Executive Director of pharma major Sun Pharma.

Behind Penguin and Random House merger

With e-books changing the dynamics of publishing, Penguin and Random House merge to protect their turf.


News you may have missed over the fortnight

News you may have missed over the fortnight - ArcelorMittal third quarter loss, Walt Disney buying out Lucasfilms and more.

LBS Case Study

How Diageo won Kenya's price-sensitive market

When spirits maker Diageo faced slowing growth in developed economies, it started expanding in emerging markets. This study looks at how Diageo developed a safe, cheap beer for the Kenyan market.

BT More

New products in the market

The recently launched Samsung Galaxy Note II comes with a 5.5-inch HD Super AMOLED display, 1.6 GHz quad-core Exynos processor and runs on Android 4.1 (Jelly Bean).

New Releases this month

Skyfall is being touted as the most successful James Bond film in the 50-yearlong run since the inception of the franchise.

Things to do this month

Held every November around the time of full moon, the Pushkar Camel Fair is one of India most rewarding travel experiences.

Taj Mahal Part Two

Although the promised replica of the Eiffel Tower in the southern Indian state of Puducherry never materialised, Dubai claims it will replicate the Taj Mahal by 2015.

Death by boredom

The next time you think you're dying of boredom, you just might be. Although boredom is common, it's no trivial matter, claims psychologist John Eastwood of York University, Toronto.

Happy flyers

Apparently, statistics prove that the best time to book a flight is precisely 21 days before the desired departure. International airfare is best booked more in advance, with the lowest rates surfacing 34 days prior to departure.

Eat your way through Manhattan

Where to go and what to eat in the Big Apple.

High Roller

When style becomes a lifestyle, every association makes a statement. BT More captures the equation between man and his machine.

Swiss watch-making: The science behind it

Brand Rolex opens its doors to reveal a universe of utmost precision, tasteful aesthetics and futuristic technology.

The Eating Budhha

B-Bar gets comfortable in the capital city and plates up thoughtful and sophisticated Japanese cuisine.

A Taste of Italy

Italian food almost always gets an Indian makeover. Prego at The Westin, Gurgaon remains true to its roots.

First drive: The new Porsche Boxster S

The new Porsche Boxster S retains the classic silhouette but has exciting new technology under the hood.

Gear up' for Diwali

Top tech tips to declutter your life, one gadget and social network at a time.

My Stuff

Alex Huang, Managing Director, Asus India shares his favourite things.

Living Room Realities

A connoisseur, curator and creator of all things decor, talks about the quirky pieces that fill her home and should complete yours.

Pressto's guide on caring for your clothes

It's essential to let your clothes breathe so spread them out for a couple of hours before slipping them back into the wardrobe. Esther Lennaerts, executive chairperson of Pressto helps you care for your clothes.

Shake It Baby

Rohan Jelkie, master mixologist and founder of beverage consultancy Tulleeho, talks quirky cocktails. Bacon and Bourbon Take four strips of smoked bacon and cook on a nonstick pan for around 20 minutes to render the fat.

Let's get to know Victor Lustig

Victor Lustig (1890-1947) was undoubtedly the most confident trickster in history. He is also known as the 'Man who sold the Eiffel Tower, twice.'

Windows shopping

Praveen Sinha, Co-founder,, tells you why it's a good idea to shop online.

Why a prestige timepiece is an investment

All that glitters may be gold, but Indians are now looking beyond the precious metal for investment options.

What a Man Needs, in Winter

Flaky, itchy and dry, that's what Crabtree and Evelyn makes sure you won't feel like this winter. Here's a grooming kit that helps you battle the chill.

Personal Space

Why do travellers block seats near them with their bags? Understanding this can avoid bad blood on long trips.


The auto expert equips you with all the right facts to keep in mind when shopping for a new car.

A perfect vacation at Scottsdale, Arizona

Scottsdale, Arizona has come of age, melding a bygone era of hospitality with a modern aesthetic, against a backdrop of the stunning Sonoran desert.