Shikha Sharma, 59
Managing director & CEO, AXIS BANK
Previous Rank : 3
A rise in bad loans and some alleged systemic lapses at Axis Bank seem to have cost Sharma her fourth term as managing director and chief executive officer of the bank. The Axis Bank board had intended Sharma to remain at the helm until 2021 but the Reserve Bank of India declined the proposal. Sharma asked for an early exit (December 2018). The bank in the January-March quarter of FY18 reported its first-ever quarterly loss since its listing. For the full year, its net profit plunged 98% to ₹121.57 crore from ₹5,467 crore in FY17. Despite the bump in the road towards the end of her tenure at Axis Bank, Sharma continues to be one of the most respected bankers in India. The bank’s stock price gained over four times from June 2009, when she joined the bank, to August 2018.