On 26th August, 2022, Keki Mistry, Vice-Chairman and CEO, HDFC was felicitated with the Lifetime Achievement Award, at the prestigious Financial Express (FE) Best Banks Awards, which honours standout performances across banks, NBFCs, SFBs and fintechs under challenging circumstances, as well as the success of individuals who have proven that they are a cut above the rest and can take on any challenge. Keki Mistry won the Lifetime Achievement Award for his stellar contribution to Mortgage Finance. Chief Guest, Finance Minister – Nirmala Sitharaman presided over the function which was attended by stalwarts from the corporate and financial sectors.
A Chartered Accountant by training, Keki Mistry is known to be an expert with handling numbers. As per reports, some of his colleagues have shared his ability to remember numbers to the sixth or seventh decimal point, till a few years ago. His penchant for such perfection could be attributed to his habit of rechecking and revising all his documents.
Known to be open and approachable, he is credited with inculcating a work-culture of open communication and accessibility at HDFC, which he joined in 1981 as Assistant Manager (Accounts Dept.). By 1993, he had worked his way up into joining the Board. He was appointed Vice Chairman and CEO in 2010. Under his leadership, HDFC’s market capitalisation moved up to $54.5 billion from $23 billion, and is today the second-largest provider of finance for Indian homebuyers.
With Mistry at its helm, HDFC has scored many firsts – itself a pioneer in mortgage finance – starting with the introduction of floating-rate loans in 1999. HDFC was an early mover in raising money through foreign currency convertible bonds (FCCBs) and rupee-denominated masala bonds.
As HDFC prepares to meld into its progeny, Mistry’s legacy will live on in the subsidiaries whose inception and growth he oversaw. Right from 1994, when HDFC joined hands with GE to set up Countrywide Consumer Financial Services, he has been a crucial part of every new venture incubated by the group. Mistry will continue to serve on Boards of leading corporates once HDFC merges into HDFC Bank. He intends to keep busy by providing services for the elderly.
Despite his professional expertise in Mortgages, Keki Mistry, on a personal level, refrained from borrowing money and built his own house of his savings. He was also known to be quite the sportsperson – as a boxer and a bowler (cricket). A true Parsi, Keki Mistry relishes his non-veg fare and good old Bollywood Hindi music by his favourite – Hemant Kumar.