IMA President and CEO Jeff Thomson, CMA, CSCA, CAE, in January completed a week-long trip to India, where he spoke at prominent international conferences, met with student and professional CMA® (Certified Management Accountant) candidates, and addressed the topic of sustainability.

Thomson began his visit in Cochin, where he attended an event sponsored by IMA’s platinum partner Logic School of Management. During that event, Thomson – accompanied by Jim Piechowski, CAE, IMA senior director of business development; and IMA India team members Fenil Vadakken, country head, and Lata Murli, manager of corporate outreach – addressed approximately 450 CMA candidates, helped celebrate Logic School of Management’s 15th Anniversary, and recognized those who had recently earned their CMA certification. Also in Cochin, Thomson headlined a “Future of Finance” corporate information session, which was attended by finance and HR heads in the region. 

Celebrating Logic School of Management?s 15th Anniversary
 Celebrating Logic School of Management’s 15th Anniversary.

Participants in ?Future of Finance? corporate info session
 Participants in “Future of Finance” corporate info session.

The next stop was Bangalore, where Thomson and Jaywardhan Semwal, CMA, vice president, Hewlett Packard Enterprise, spoke at a chapter event on the topic of “Global Economic Conditions and the Role of Management Accountants” and “Industrial Revolution and the Impact on Finance Professionals.” On January 20-21 in Bangalore, Thomson served as the keynote speaker at an international conference, co-hosted by IMA and Christ University (where the event was held), titled “Harmonizing People, Planet, and Profits: Sustainable Strategies and Ethical Considerations in the 21st Century.”

A well-attended Bangalore Chapter event
 A well-attended Bangalore Chapter event.

Opening ceremony at the sustainability conference
 Opening ceremony at the sustainability conference.

In his keynote address, Thomson discussed “Trust, Transparency, and Accountability: The Value of Corporate Governance and Ethical Considerations in the 21st Century.” Thomson also served as a panel speaker for a panel discussion on the topic of “The Organizational and Operational Boundaries of Integrated or Nonfinancial Reporting.” Fellow panelists included Varum Jain, co-founder and CEO of CareerGraph; Kevin Moore, director, Chartered Institute for Securities & Investment, UK; Jaywardhan Semwal; and Carlos Malet, director, master in global entrepreneurial management, IQS-School of Management. 

Following the conference, Thomson and Semwal led a seminar for students at Christ University who are pursuing CMA certification or interested in joining IMA. During that session, attended by approximately 400 participants, Thomson discussed “The Changing Role of Finance Professionals in Business” and fielded many questions from the audience. At another student seminar, held at Mount Carmel College, Thomson and Piechowski spoke to nearly 400 students on the topic of “The Future of Finance.”

Thomson addresses a large group of students at Christ University
 Thomson addresses a large group of students at Christ University.

Finally, in Goa on January 23-25, Thomson served as a keynote speaker at the 2nd International Conference on Economics & Finance (ICEF 2020), sponsored by the Birla Institute of Technology and Science (BITS Pilani). During his talk, Thomson discussed the topic of the global economy and finance, including the most recent results of IMA’s jointly sponsored Global Economic Conditions Survey (GECS).

Noted Thomson in his remarks, “In developing short- and long-range forecasts of financial and nonfinancial indicators – profits, people, and planet – management accountants need to understand the macro economic conditions and trends that inform consumers' purchasing decisions. And while, overall, fourth quarter 2019 saw an increase in consumer sentiment and a global recession for 2020 as unlikely, there are many global risks to be proactively managed. CMAs are perfectly positioned as strategic business partners to the CEO and Board to help navigate and lead an organization in disruptive and turbulent times.”

Thomson discusses the global economy at ICEF 2020
 Thomson discusses the global economy at ICEF 2020.

On the corporate side, Thomson met one-on-one with the CFO of Amazon India. He also addressed members of the Accenture senior leadership and finance team, where approximately 230 team members from multiple locations logged in to hear Thomson speak on the topic of GECS, and met with 30 finance leaders at Novozymes, a global biotech company.

Commenting on the recent visits, Thomson said, “IMA works with like-minded organizations around the world to deliver value to our members on a global scale. It was an honor to serve as a keynote speaker and moderator at these esteemed events and to meet with IMA members in India who are working to enhance their own career outlook as well as improve their organizations and society.”

For more information on IMA’s activities in the Middle East and India, please visit IMA Middle East/India.