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MasterCard's India-born CEO Ajay Banga and ICICI Bank chief Chanda Kochhar have been named by Fortune magazine among the '2012 Businesspersons of the Year', an annual ranking of 50 global leaders who are "the best in business". The list has been topped by Amazon founder and CEO Jeff Bezos with Apple CEO Tim Cook coming in at the second place.
Another Indian giving Banga and Kochhar company in the list of 50 global business leaders is Deepak Narula, founder and managing partner of hedge fund firm Metacapital Management.
Banga, 52 ranks eighth in the list while Kochhar comes in at the 18th position, one notch ahead of billionaire philanthropist Warren Buffett. Narula ranks 36th. Fortune said investors have so far been impressed with Banga's performance at the helm of MasterCard.
"Since Banga took the helm two years ago, MasterCard's stock has more than doubled, outperforming archrival Visa," it said, adding that the former Citigroup executive wants MasterCard to be a leader in the mobile payments revolution.
Read: India's Super Rich 2012
Banga's other big bet includes prepaid cards in emerging markets such as Mexico, South Africa and Brazil, a major reason why MasterCard now generates 60 per cent of its revenues outside the US.
On Kochhar, 51, Fortune said a bullish outlook through the recession helped her direct India's second largest bank, which has assets of USD 93 billion, to a "standout performance". "Next up for the ICICI lifer: More global clients," the publication added.
On Narula, Fortune said the former Lehman trader's USD 1.5 billion mortgage-focused hedge fund has "left others in the industry in the dust this year, posting 37 per cent returns through October".
"Metacapital has outpaced other funds for years by taking positions with near perfect foresight of policy change and movement in the housing market".
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