Ashish Saraf joins Airbus Group as vice president

Mumbai: Kicking off its 'Make In India' plans including aircraft and helicopters, the Airbus Group has appointed Ashish Saraf as its vice-president, Industry Development, Strategic Partnerships and Offsets, an official said here on Monday. Saraf, formerly with Tata Sikorsky, will pilot Airbus Group's initiatives and conceive new ones for all the businesses under Airbus Group India, and aim to increase the company's industrial footprint here. Described as "a dynamic executive experienced in leading industrialization initiatives in the aerospace and defence sectors" by Airbus Group India President Pierre de Bausset, the move to appoint Saraf comes soon after Airbus Group united its Indian divisions under a single company. "Airbus Group's ambition is to be a benchmark setting company when it comes to realizing the 'Make in India' vision of the Indian government. I look forward to supporting the Group fulfil its ambition while helping my country meet its indigenization goals," remarked Saraf. The Airbus Group is actively collaborating in India, including embedding local players in its global value chain and tying up with Indian partners for several ongoing defence acquisition programmes. It has made a bid with Tata to jointly manufacture the C295 aircraft in India as a replacement for the Indian Air Force's ageing Avro aircraft and has tied-up with Mahindra Defence to jointly produce helicopters in India. An industry veteran with wide experience in offsets, industrial relations, Greenfield start-up development and strategic partnerships, Saraf studied at Symbiosis Institute of Business Management, Pune and the National Institute of Technology, Nagpur before launching his career with Dassault Systems and Deloitte Consulting. Employing around 138,600 people, the Airbus Group is a global leader in aeronautics, space and related services comprising Airbus, Airbus Defence and Space, and Airbus Helicopters, with a revenue of Euros 60.7 billion in 2014.