Tell us a little about yourself
My name is Anup Mysoor and I have 29 years of work experience, much of which has been in the banking industry, where I led businesses in alternative investment management, corporate finance, corporate banking and investment banking.
I completed the MSc Investment Analysis at Stirling in September 1990 and almost immediately joined the Mergers and Acquisitions team of Northumbrian Water Group in Newcastle-upon-Tyne.
Citigroup hired me in 1994 and I was with the bank for over 21 years in London and Hong Kong.
From 2008 till 2015, I was MD and Head of Aviation, Power & Utilities investment banking in Asia-Pacific, where I was involved in over 90 episodic transactions with a value in excess of US$75 billion. The product set included Mergers and Acquisitions, Equity and Debt. My work was in Transportation, Power and Infrastructure – across developed and emerging markets. As the head of the business and a member of credit committee, I had overall responsibility for strategy, people, cost control, as well as financial performance.
In 2016, I reinvented myself as an entrepreneur and co-founded Ishka, a data, conferences and consultancy start-up based in London. My role was to provide strategic direction, build the management team, lead geographic expansion, support talent development and enhance brand profile.
In 2018-19, I was Managing Partner at Doric, an alternative investment manager with assets under management of US$9bn, of which US$7bn related to aircrafts. I had specific goals: establish an Asia office, complete the first Asia-Europe transaction and build a global investor coverage team; all these goals have been successfully executed.
What is your current role?
Post Citibank, I decided to focus my energy towards an objective closer to my heart – women’s economic empowerment – via the education of girls and sustainable development in lower income countries. Towards that goal, I founded the Pink and Purple Rainbow Scholarships to allow underprivileged women and LGBTQ+ candidates from India to pursue advanced degree programmes overseas.
Since 2018, I have been a Board member of Oxfam’s Enterprise Development Programme (EDP), where we support entrepreneurs in some of the world’s poorest countries, with the goal of women’s economic empowerment. EDP supports enterprises in the ‘missing middle’ of finance – too big for microfinance or too small for traditional lenders – helping them become sustainable businesses providing vital jobs that allow people to lift themselves out of poverty.
What do you like most about what you do?
I am using the skills I acquired at the University of Stirling and my finance career to support projects in the non-profit sector.
What exciting projects are you working on at the moment?
The Pink Rainbow Scholarship, which I conceptualised in 2016, with the first candidates starting in 2017, is available to women and LGBTQ+ graduates from Shanti Bhavan to enable them to pursue postgraduate degrees in overseas universities. Eligible candidates should have secured a place on a reputable Masters programme as well as a tuition waiver. The Pink Rainbow Scholarship will cover all other expenses, including travel, visas, living expenses as well as an allowance for family income support. Each Pink Rainbow Scholar makes a paying-it-forward commitment to support two further Pink Rainbow Scholars, if they can afford to do so in future. During their Masters, Pink Rainbow Scholars are guided by internationally based mentors to help realise their career objectives. The Pink Rainbow Scholarship commenced in September 2017 with two young women pursuing postgraduate qualifications at universities in Scotland.
One of those candidates was Chaithra Vijaykumar who did an MSc Investment Analysis at the University of Stirling in 2017-2018. Chaithra loved her time at Stirling. She was Chief Marketing Officer of the Student Managed Investment Fund and her picture is on the front cover of the 2017-18 SMIF Annual Report. Chaithra is currently working in Berlin, and has ambitions of being a start-up entrepreneur in India sooner rather than later.
For the 2019-20 academic year, the Pink and Purple Rainbow Scholarships will support three candidates, two pursuing MBAs at the Asia School of Business in Malaysia and another pursuing a ballet degree in Scotland.
What is your style of working?
During my 14 years in Asia-Pacific, I used to travel 48 weeks per year across 16 countries. I developed skills to adapt to my environment and enjoy the diversity, in terms of people, situations, geographies, cultures alike!
What are you most proud of in your career?
I loved being in Hong Kong from 2002-2016 when the Asia-Pacific region was booming. Now, I am super proud to be the supportive spouse as Poorna, my wife, builds her academic career in Oxford.
Who do you admire and why?
I admire my wife, Poorna, as she is brilliant and adorable. We’ve been married for 18 years – all happy ones probably because I follow a single simple rule: “Happy wife, happy life”.
What are you reading at the moment?
“Girl, Woman, Other” by Bernardine Evaristo. The first book by a black woman to win the Booker deserves to be read. However, this year, I’ve read many fine novels including: “The Feast of the Goat”, by Mario Vargas Llosa; “A Woman on the Edge of Time: A son’s search for his mother”, by Jeremy Gavron; “Reservoir 13”, by Jon McGregor; “Heat and Dust”, by Ruth Prawer Jhabvala; “Normal People”, by Sally Rooney; “The Only Story”, by Julian Barnes; and “The Bell Jar”, by Sylvia Plath.
What song takes you back to a favourite memory of Stirling?
Memories of Stirling come flooding back when I hear Tanita Tikaram’s “Twist in My Sobriety” or Tracy Chapman’s “Talkin’ ’bout a Revolution”.
What advice would you give yourself if you were arriving at the University for the first time?
You are going to make lots of friends, and those friendships are going to last a lifetime… be an open book and allow everyone in!
If you were going to do it all again, would you do it differently?
Someone from my Stirling year touches me every day of my life – as I write these words, I am seeing WhatsApp texts from a Cypriot friend in Kerala about Fish Molee – a spicy coconut dish. I wouldn’t change a thing about my year at Stirling, it was magical!
If you could give current Stirling students one piece of advice, what would it be?
People who go to Stirling are special. Focus on the people and everything else will figure itself out.
So, what’s next?
I’m going to drift and go with the flow…
In my spare time…
…Though I have travelled more than most, I still feel that there is so much more of the planet to explore and experience.