59 min

#4 Road Show - In Conversation with Kartik Desai The Seductive Illusion of Hard Work

    • Careers

Kartik leads Asha Impact, an impact investing and policy advocacy platform, a capital-on-call multi-family office for Indian business leaders, UHNIs and philanthropists to invest in scalable, for-profit social enterprises. Asha Impact also works with the Indian government on sector-specific advocacy based on the experience of its investees and building the market for blended instruments like impact bonds through its non-profit trust. Prior to setting up Asha in 2014, Kartik worked with two pioneering impact funds in India – Lok Capital and Aavishkaar – was an investment banker with DSP Merrill Lynch, and consulted with the Rockefeller Foundation and the UNDP in the US and Africa. 

He has led several pioneering initiatives in building the social enterprise and impact financing ecosystem in India such as being a judge on the world’s first reality TV show on impact investing, launching a social enterprise operating a co-working center and digital polling platform for underprivileged youth in Delhi, teaching seminars on impact investing, authoring op-eds and policy papers on different development issues, and being selected as a ‘Champion of Change’ by the Indian PM’s office and Niti Aayog. He has led investments into twelve early-stage enterprises and is also a board member and member of the Executive Committee of the Impact Investors Association representing 40+ organisations and member of the India Steering Committee of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs.  

He completed his education at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (Bachelors in Finance) and SIPA at Columbia University (Masters in International Affairs).

Kartik leads Asha Impact, an impact investing and policy advocacy platform, a capital-on-call multi-family office for Indian business leaders, UHNIs and philanthropists to invest in scalable, for-profit social enterprises. Asha Impact also works with the Indian government on sector-specific advocacy based on the experience of its investees and building the market for blended instruments like impact bonds through its non-profit trust. Prior to setting up Asha in 2014, Kartik worked with two pioneering impact funds in India – Lok Capital and Aavishkaar – was an investment banker with DSP Merrill Lynch, and consulted with the Rockefeller Foundation and the UNDP in the US and Africa. 

He has led several pioneering initiatives in building the social enterprise and impact financing ecosystem in India such as being a judge on the world’s first reality TV show on impact investing, launching a social enterprise operating a co-working center and digital polling platform for underprivileged youth in Delhi, teaching seminars on impact investing, authoring op-eds and policy papers on different development issues, and being selected as a ‘Champion of Change’ by the Indian PM’s office and Niti Aayog. He has led investments into twelve early-stage enterprises and is also a board member and member of the Executive Committee of the Impact Investors Association representing 40+ organisations and member of the India Steering Committee of the Aspen Network of Development Entrepreneurs.  

He completed his education at the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania (Bachelors in Finance) and SIPA at Columbia University (Masters in International Affairs).

59 min