Electronics industry loses an achiever

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By Srabani Sen

Jayshree Venkatraman, chairman,

The Indian electronics industry suffered a great loss with the death of AMCO Batteries chairperson, 49 years old Jayshree Venkatraman. Barely a month after she took over as the chairperson of AMCO Batteries, Jayshree Venkatraman succumbed to pneumonia in Chennai, on April 5, 2011. Her death comes just three months after the death of her father, iconic industrialist A Sivasailam, who for decades headed and steered the Rs 70 billion (Rs 7000 crore) Amalgamations Group, of which AMCO is a part.

Jayshree Venkatraman carved a niche for herself in this male dominated industry. She managed both sides of her life well—work on the home front and as well as steering the Rs 2.4 billion (Rs 240 crore) AMCO battery division out from one of its most turbulent phases in the mid 1990s, when AMCO suffered a major setback. Jayshree turned around the battery division by focusing on the auto segment. Under her leadership, the company grew three times and the turnover last year was Rs 2.4 billion.

Jayshree Venkatraman always thought big and aimed to turn AMCO into a Rs 5 billion (Rs 500 crore) company by 2013. Joining as the executive assistant to the CEO, Jayshree’s business goals centred around AMCO. Holding different positions within the company, Jayshree moved up the ranks to become a board member in 2006.

She was a general manager, and then took over as the marketing head. Later she became the vice president of the organisation. Finally, she was selected as the chairperson by the board of AMCO. Jayshree also held the position of director, Tractors and Farm Equipment Ltd (TAFE).

A low key and down to earth person, Jayshree did her MBA in 1989 from the International Institute of Management (IMI), New Delhi. She held a BA degree from Stella Maris College and a masters degree in business economics from Ethiraj College.

One of the major achievements of Jayshree Venkatraman was setting up three modern manufacturing facilities for batteries in Chennai. AMCO produced batteries for almost all important applications including automotive, telecommunication, UPS systems, inverters, etc.

With her managerial abilities and leadership qualities, she achieved many milestones and had recently signed a technical collaboration agreement with BB Battery Company of China for the production of VRLA batteries.

She has to her credit several academic distinctions and awards. IMI conferred on her the ‘Distinguished Alumnus Award’ in recognition of her dedicated and meritorious service to business and society, the only recipient of this award in 25 years.

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