for helping me attend the school of my dreams
Campaign Champion | Bharat Desai
One of the leadership gifts to the Victors for Michigan, Victory for Ross campaign is a $1 million commitment from the Desai Family Foundation.
This investment is earmarked to develop a business accelerator in Southeast Michigan. The donors hope it will involve the new digital economy and the Michigan' automotive/manufacturing sector.
“The family felt inspired to make the gift because we like to support causes that will have solid and widespread positive impact. We saw a chance to do so at a truly outstanding institution,” Desai says. The accelerator — a joint venture of the Samuel Zell and Robert H. Lurie Institute for Entrepreneurial Studies and the College of Engineering’s Center for Entrepreneurship — will offer infrastructure, mentoring, and financial support to qualified start-up companies. These investments will help companies become established and start growing on their own.
Desai knows something about succeeding as a startup; he cofounded and still serves as chairman of Syntel Inc., which has grown into a major worldwide IT services company. Combined with the world-class resources and reputation of the University of Michigan, Desai envisions the accelerator becoming a place that will attract interest from around the globe.
“This is a terrific opportunity for us to kick-start some great ideas for the state of Michigan,” he says.
Bharat Desai cofounded Syntel, Inc. with his spouse, Neerja Sethi, and currently serves as Chairman of the Board.Mr. Desai holds an MBA in Finance from the Stephen M. Ross School of Business at the University of Michigan and a Bachelor's of Technology in Electrical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) in Mumbai, India. Mr. Desai was named Entrepreneur of the Year in 2005 by the Ross School of Business and was named Alumnus of the Year by the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology, Mumbai. He is also recognized as Entrepreneur of the Year by USA Today and NASDAQ.
We saw a chance to make a positive impact at a truly outstanding institution.
— Bharat Desai, MBA ’81