BIRA 91 inducts Manoj Kohli and Bharat Anand as Independent Directors on its Board

BIRA 91 inducts Manoj Kohli and Bharat Anand as Independent Directors on its Board
BIRA 91 inducts Manoj Kohli and Bharat Anand as Independent Directors on its Board

The company expects to leverage Manoj Kohli’s deep operating experience as it expands in India and abroad, as well as Bharat Anand’s counsel to strengthen corporate governance.

National, 28 Nov 2023: Bira 91’s parent company, B9 Beverages Ltd, announced the appointment of Manoj Kohli, Former MD of Bharti Airtel and former Country Head at SoftBank India, and Bharat Anand, Partner, Khaitan & Co. as Independent Directors on its Board. With this appointment, Bira 91 expects to leverage the significant global business experience of the new appointees as it expands its business in India and overseas, as well as strengthen its corporate governance.

In a career that spans over four decades, Manoj Kohli has played a pivotal role as former MD and CEO of Bharti Airtel. He has led the transformation of Bharti Airtel’s business into the number 3 telco in the world, from 2 million customers to over 400 million customers, and played a key role in driving Airtel’s global expansion. He was also the Country Head for Softbank India, and in this capacity helped guide leading startups such as Ola, Paytm, Lenskart, Snapdeal and WeWork. Manoj currently serves on the Board of prominent companies including WeWork India and Triveni Engineering, and is a senior advisor for Deloitte India, and Masters’ Union.

Bharat Anand is amongst India’s leading corporate lawyers and serves as the Partner and Office Head, New Delhi at Khaitan & Co., India’s oldest full-service law firm. Renowned for his expertise in mergers and acquisitions, joint ventures, and private equity transactions within the Indian business landscape, Bharat is ranked by both Chambers Asia Pacific and UK as a “Band 1 Lawyer” for M&A work in Delhi and is recognised as a Global Leader by “Who’s Who Legal” for M&A and Governance issues. Additionally, he holds notable leadership roles in industry associations, presently serving as a member on the national executive committee of FICCI and as a member of CII’s Committee on Transparency and Governance. In these roles, Anand actively contributes to fostering a transparent and resilient business environment in India.

Speaking on the newly appointed independent directors, Ankur Jain, Founder and CEO, Bira 91 said, “I am truly excited to bring on-board Manoj and Bharat as independent directors at Bira 91. We are at an important inflection point as a business, and as we continue on our journey of high growth, we would want to ensure that we develop a business that has long-term sustainability, improved risk management and increased quality of corporate governance. With Manoj’s and Bharat’s experience, I am sure we will be able to strengthen Bira 91 considerably on these aspects.”

Commenting on his appointment, Manoj Kohli, said, “Over the next decade, my mission is to support entrepreneurs in building successful businesses that can scale not only in India, but also create a strong presence globally. Bira 91 is amongst the fastest growing beer brands in the world and is at an exciting phase of its business journey. I am excited to partner with their team and help take the business to newer heights.”

Speaking on his appointment, Bharat Anand, said, “Bira 91 has done a great job of disrupting a really promising, high growth category. As B9 evolves into a large business, I hope to help support its transition into a well-run corporate and facilitate sustained growth”

Bira 91’s parent company, B9 Beverages Ltd, was established in 2015 and is now the country’s fourth largest beer company. It has six manufacturing units spread across the country, and a portfolio of flavorful beers and sells its products across 1000+ cities in 24 countries. In 2023, B9 Beverages entered the Beyond Beer category and launched Hill Station Ciders – its portfolio of alcoholic ciders and Grizly Seltzers – its line of hard seltzers inspired by cocktails. Bira 91 operates four taprooms in Bangalore and Delhi-NCR, where it releases one new beer every week. It has also recently acquired The Beer Café, India’s leading pub chain, to strengthen its play in pubs and taprooms. B9 Beverages is backed by leading investors from across the world – including Japan’s leading beer company, Kirin Holdings, Japan’s largest bank, MUFG Bank, Sofina of Belgium, and Peak XV Partners (formerly Sequoia India).