Hema Hattangady, Co-founder Conzerv & Author, Lift Off – Transforming Conzerv

In this episode, Ashutosh Garg engages in a conversation with Hema Hattangady, Co-Founder, Conzerv. Hema is a published author and a YPO member. She is an alumnus of IIM-Calcutta.

Hema talks about the three key milestones in her life. She shares the challenges faced while building a business brick-by-brick. With pride she says what went into building India’s largest energy management company. She talks about he learnings and challenges throughout her career.

Hema reminisces about the major transitions in her life- from building a company with almost no money, expanding it, and exiting. Her story is a case study in the Harvard Business School. Hema tells what made her sell her company and how did she feel making that choice.  She talks about her social sector initiatives Conserve My Campus and Conserve My Planet.

Hema talks about Lift-Off- transforming Conzerv, her book. She talks about what can be done to improve gender balance in India. Hema defines success in a unique way. Before concluding, she tells where she draws inspiration from.

Hema Hattangady, Co-founder Conzerv & Author, Lift Off – Transforming Conzerv



Smt Hema Hattangady is a B Com from Karnataka University Dharwad and an MBA from IIM Kolkata. She joined Enercon Systems, the business established by her late father-in-law, Shri H. Vasanth Rao, a renowned innovator and entrepreneur. The venture capital firm that invested in Enercon appointed her as CEO after Vasanth Rao retired from active operations. Hema’s husband Ashok was in charge of R&D. Together they grew the company, which was later renamed Conzerv, into India’s largest energy management company. In 2009 they exit to Schneider Electric. Conzerv had become a highly profitable market leader, and was known for its innovative products, people practices, focus on systems and processes and, above all, for sticking to ethical principles against all odds.
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Hema has written about her journey in her book (with co-author Ashish Sen) Lift Off- Transforming Conzerv. Hema has served as an independent director on the boards of SKF India Ltd and NELCO Ltd (a TATA enterprise) and continues on the board of India’s leading machine tool manufacturing company Ace Designers Ltd. She was on the Advisory Board of Schneider Electric India for four years until October 2012. Hema also mentors and coaches young entrepreneurs & students and is an advisor to Takshashila Institution an independent think tank and India’s foremost public policy school. She co-founded Alliance for an Energy Efficient Economy (AEEE), an industry-led initiative to bring industries and service providersin energy efficiency together. She also created Conserve My Campus, a program to teach school children to save energy at home and in school. Schneider has scaled this program beyond India under the name Conserve My Planet. Shri Ashok Hattangady is an ‘engineer’s engineer’. He holds a BE in Electrical Engineering from BMS College Bangalore and an MS from University of Texas at Austin. A man of many interests and talents he is as comfortable with carpentry, sketching and painting, photography, sound technology, playing musical instruments, holistic healing etc. as he is with designing complex digital electronics. His innovative ability made Conzerv the market leader in metering and energy management and an attractive acquisition for Schneider. Hema and Ashok live in Bangalore with daughter Ananya and two cats. Their son Raghav is in Cleveland, Ohio. Ashok and Hema share a passion for philanthropy, mentoring, music of all genres and cuisines of all cultures.






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