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Shirish Maniar, Chief Financial Officer, Viom Networks

March 13, 2013
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One of the main motivations for Shirish Maniar, chief financial officer, Viom Networks, while joining the company in 2011 was to fulfil his dream of spearheading the third initial public offering (IPO) of his over 30-year-long career. A chartered accountant and company secretary by qualification, he has in the past been associated with industries like pharmaceuticals, steel, engineering, agrochemicals and banking.

Aside from the IPO, there were other considerations that prompted him to join Viom Networks. “All throughout my career I have been by and large based out of Gujarat,” says Maniar. I have moved out of a role only when I felt that the challenges for me in an organisation had dried up. The choices within Gujarat were limited. Barring a few companies, it was difficult to find one that would offer scale, corporate governance and the professional freedom to carry out one’s responsibilities. The move to Viom Networks presented me with an opportunity to work on a bigger level.”

At Viom Networks, Maniar is responsible for different teams such as treasury, accounting, and mergers and acquisitions. He looks after the planning, budgeting and internal taxation processes of the company.

As a critical part of the ecosystem supporting the telecom sector, tower companies share the challenges faced by service providers. “As a tower company, we represent 40 to 45 per cent of operators’ costs and we are, therefore, impacted by the pressures faced by them. The year 2012 saw the industry being affected by the cancellation of 2G licences,” he says.

With about 41,000 tower sites, Viom Networks has the tough task of remotely maintaining and operating these sites. Also, with each tower supporting multiple tenancies, the company has to handle a large number of contracts and manage relationships with a number of clients and vendors. These challenges notwithstanding, Maniar enjoys his work and is focused on making Viom Networks the most attractive infrastructure company for all stakeholders.

In the past, Maniar has worked with companies like Zydus Cadila, Electrotherm India and Steelco Gujarat Limited. He spent 15 years with Zydus Cadila and counts his experience with the company as one of his most memorable ones. “The company gave me an opportunity to handle one of the biggest IPOs of the time.”

Maniar follows a collaborative and democratic approach at work. He believes in discussing issues and finding solutions. He expects a lot of detailing from his team and likes to get into the facts and analysis himself. “I constantly remind my team that data speaks and they should develop skills to listen to it,” says Maniar.



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