Team

Priya Naik

CEO & Founder

Samhita Social Ventures evolved from Priya’s work with the Nadathur family’s social initiatives in the areas of nature conservation, art, education for differently-abled children, and livelihood generation through microenterprise. Prior to working with Nadathur’s family office, Priya co-founded The Spark Group, an education company that delivered affordable education to low income communities. At Spark, Priya helped define strategy, created the business plan and was also instrumental in raising funds from IFMR Trust. Priya’s interest in social entrepreneurship began when she worked as a Researcher at the Poverty Action Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in Cambridge, USA. At MIT, Priya was part of two student-led start-ups – Aerovax, a company that created safe, inhalable aerosol vaccines that could be delivered without the use of needles and Kalpataru, a company that delivered innovative, low-cost technology to increase the efficiency of microfinance institutions. Kalpataru’s pilot was tested with the Grameen Bank in Bangladesh and was presented to Nobel laureate, Dr Muhammad Yunus. Both social enterprises won several awards at MIT. Priya has worked as a consultant with the International Finance Corporation in Africa. She started her career in Accounting at Arthur Andersen in Mumbai. Her career is an interesting fusion of on-the-ground grassroots solutions through enterprise and strategic consulting experience with established companies, a perfect combination for understanding and implementing CSR projects across the board. Priya has a Masters in Economics from Yale University, USA, a Masters in Public Policy from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, USA and a Masters in Commerce from Mumbai University where she stood first in the entire graduating class.

Vikram Rao

Executive Director – Strategic Partnerships

Vikram is a senior and versatile professional with over 25 years of both consulting and operational experience in the areas of business transformation, business development, Go-to-Market, rural marketing, digital marketing, business process re-engineering and use of technology in business. He worked with the leading FMCG company Colgate-Palmolive for 18 years where he was at the forefront of leading change in various senior roles both in India and abroad including driving commercial effectiveness in thirteen countries of the Greater Asia Division. Later he turned entrepreneurial to conceptualize and execute a hyperlocal asset-light platform (Jiffeez), with many firsts to its credit, focused on helping shoppers across socio-economic strata discover and buy daily needs from unorganized retailers.On the capability development front, he is passionate about Leadership and Team-building based on his personal belief system of the need to strive for a balance between the head, heart and hands. He was in the 7th cohort of the ILSS Leadership program, an immersive and intensive experience providing an insider view to the challenges and opportunities in the sector.In his free time, he is a keen student of ancient Indian history and heritage. He loves experiential travel and the outdoors. In the course of work and leisure, he has traversed India including the deep interiors. His life experiences make him deeply interested in the development sector with advocacy for the learning disabled in particular being a passion.Vikram is an Electronics Engineer with a post-graduate degree in management from IIM Calcutta

 

Vaibhav Gupta

Associate Director – Strategic Partnerships

Vaibhav has 7 years of experience in governance and public policy working across NGOs, State Governments, Union Government and Governance Consulting organizations. As part of his responsibilities, Vaibhav was working with Clinton Health Access Initiative (CHAI) to drive private sector engagement in Tuberculosis, wherein he collaborated with multiple governmental and non-governmental partners to manage end-to-end execution of strategic projects. Prior to that, he was a Consultant with Samagra, working closely as a member of the Skills & Employment Cell of the Chief Minister of Haryana wherein he enabled Government & Private recruitments of over 50,000 people in the State. He has also worked as a Consultant to the Union Minister for Skill Development & Entrepreneurship in Govt. of India, wherein he was primarily entrusted with policy research and strategy. Vaibhav was a Legislative Assistant to a Member of Parliament (LAMP) fellow 2014-15, assisting the MP in parliamentary business. A PGP graduate from ISB and an engineer from DCE, Vaibhav has keen interest in Public Policy research,discussions and implementation. His research and case studies on public health (TB), low cost Jugaad strategies, CSR for skill development, and social enterprising organizations have been published and presented at various international journals and forums. Vaibhav likes travelling and is an avid follower of Indian politics. He deeply enjoys Bollywood, Cricket and long conversations over a cup of tea 😊

Anisha Panigrahi

Manager – Strategic Partnerships

Anisha has total 6+ years of experience in the Automotive and Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Consulting, Skill Development, Ed-Tech solutions, Govt. & Private Sector Advisory, Governance & Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Space in designing outcome-based scalable solutions and managing PAN India level projects. Previously she worked with IL&FS Skills Development Corporation Ltd (a leading TVET provider in India) as a Strategy & Business Development Manager in the Corporate Skill Development Vertical handling B2B, B2G and CSR partnerships and solutions. She has also been associated with reputed organizations like Eicher Motors Limited, Teach for India and AIESEC. Being passionate about empowering the under-served population, she has worked extensively on the ground in designing and managing multi-stakeholder and multi-locational projects involving diverse skill sets in rural and semi-urban geographies. She has also worked on several bilateral/ multilateral projects funded by USAID, World Bank, ADB, DFID, UNDP, ILO, IFC etc. focusing on projects aimed at socio-economic development. She has worked on various Cluster Development initiatives in the African continent and GCC countries; with Central Ministries & State Govts on various Govt. Schemes and has designed CSR projects for aspirational districts as prescribed by NITI Aayog (GoI). Anisha is an avid reader and loves travelling, listening to music, playing squash, painting & being an active member of global networking clubs.