NATIONAL

IIM-Kozhikode is going places

Gaurav Chandra Agarwal.

Gaurav Chandra Agarwal.  

KOZHIKODE, MARCH 17. Working his way up from where the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama stepped ashore in 1498 while still in his 20s, Gaurav Chandra Agarwal has just landed a dream job in the United States. He has also created history of sorts: he is the first student of the Indian Institute of Management, Kozhikode (IIM-K) to get a placement abroad through campus recruitment.

Mr. Agarwal is hired for a salary of Rs 37.4 lakhs ($85,000) a year by the U.S. financial services giant Capital One. He will join as a Senior Business Analyst in October. A computer science graduate from the Motilal Nehru National Institute of Technology (NIT), Allahabad, he had worked for 23 months with the Centre for Development of Telematics (C-DoT), New Delhi before coming to the Kozhikode campus for the management programme. Mr. Agarwal hails from Allahabad. The team from Capital One came to IIM-K after visiting IIM-Ahmedabad and IIM-Bangalore. It was for the first time that the company had come to IIM-K, an institution set up in 1996.

Special skills

Mr. Agarwal told The Hindu that he felt great to be the first IIM-K student to get an international job offer. "The company was looking for a special kind of analytical skills. Also, my good academic record helped me get that job. I am perhaps one of the five or six students the company has selected from India,'' he said. He had got offers from IBM and Deloitte Consulting as well.

Earlier, a student of this batch had got a foreign summer placement at the National Kidney Foundation in Singapore.

``This is an achievement for IIM-K ... With a strong presence of banking and financial services, we had in fact diversified our portfolio of participating companies. Last year, IT companies offered a major chunk of the jobs,'' Dr. S.S. Kumar, chairperson, placement, IIM-K, said.

The selection process on the campus took place on February 23 and 24.

The highest salary offer in India came from Deloitte Consulting: Rs 10.15 lakhs. The company was recruiting IIM-K students for the first time. Gaurav Vohra, a mechanical engineering graduate from the Delhi College of Engineering with 24 months' experience has been placed in enterprise application consulting by Deloitte.

Higher and more offers

The batch size at IIM-K this year was 120 compared to last year's 59. The number of companies that came to IIM-K grew to 71 from last year's 45. The average salary in India offered this year was Rs. 7.3 lakhs, which is 13 per cent more than last year's figure of Rs. 6.35 lakhs.

A total of 194 jobs were offered to the batch this year: an average of 1.62 per student. Last year the number of jobs offered was 107: an average of 1.81.

Banking and financial services edged out the IT sector by one percentage point, making offers to 31 per cent of the batch as against the latter's figure of 30 per cent. Marketing/Fast Moving Consumer Goods (FMCG) jobs were offered to 15 per cent of the students, followed by Consulting (13 per cent), General Management, Automotive and others (6 per cent). The emerging sector of IT-enabled services (ITES) made offers to 3 per cent of students.

The recruiters

The first-time recruiters included JP Morgan Chase, Cap Gemini and ITC. Citigroup, Accenture, GE, IBM, Asian Paints, HP, Kotak, Godrej and the Aditya Birla Group, who are regular recruiters, participated. The largest recruiter at Placements 2005 was IBM, which made 17 in business consulting, SAP consulting, sales and marketing and human resources.

A number of IIM-K students have had significant international exposure through work experience, summer internships (in Singapore) or through IIM-K's foreign exchange programme (in France and in Germany), which was started last year.

Around 20 per cent of the batch received pre-placement offers (PPOs) or pre-placement interview (PPI) offers from leading recruiters. Sixteen students got PPOs from top firms including Asian Paints, GE Money, Gecis, Godrej, Wipro Technologies, SBI, Patni and L&T, while eight students received PPI offers from ITC, Britannia and Wipro Consumer Care.

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