It has left industry insiders scratching their heads. Rajiv Dube, for long President for passenger cars at Tata Motors, has decided to move out of the Tata Group and join the Aditya Birla Group. No one is quite sure what triggered the exit. After all, the 48-year-old Dube has been the blue-eyed boy of Ratan Tata.
Was it because of a lack of challenge at Tata Motors or just a high-profile executive poaching by a head-hunting firm? According to people who know, Dube's new assignment would involve a more back-end role at the AVB Group — as part of the Corporate Advisory Board of the Group. In fact, he won't be a media-facing person in his new role.
Now, this would be a sea change from his high-profile job with the Tatas. Dube was effectively the face of Ratan Tata's passenger car operation since 1998, including the introduction of the Tata Nano in 2009. He also played a big role in the integration of Jaguar Land Rover into Tata Motors.
Dube's experience in project management and partnership building could make him an invaluable asset for AVB Chairman Kumar Mangalam Birla. But would a relatively staid job in an old economy group hold Dube's interest for long? We'll wait and see. Dube has mentioned in the past that he would miss cars.