Who is Manoj Parmar, SpinVox's new CFO?

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When the news broke yesterday that SpinVox, after 15 months without a full-time Chief Financial Officer (remember, this is a company that has raised over $200m in investment and is making significant losses every year, not to mention the recent scandals that have been engulfing the company) had finally appointed Manoj Parmar to the position, our first reaction wasn’t “at last!”, but rather: “Who?”

Parmar comes from Servista, a European IT company that off-shores its services to India. Parmar has served as its CFO for the last five years. So how did that go? Take a look at Servista’s website and you’ll see:

Please note that as of 1 July 2009, Servista Limited is in administration. All enquiries should be directed to Baker Tilly, the Administrators.

These things happen. And Manoj is still listed on their site as CFO (and no, we can’t find a picture of him either).

What was Parmar doing before that, though? According to his bio, “Manoj held various international finance and general management positions at Cable & Wireless. He trained as a Chartered Accountant with Pricewaterhouse-Coopers, has a Bachelor’s degree in Accountancy from the University of Liverpool and completed the Management Development Program at INSEAD. His experience at C&W includes three years in the United States as Director of the Global Internet Group and roles such as Head of Planning & Analysis and Director of Internal Audit”.

That would be the same Cable and Wireless, presumably, which at the same time attempted a financially disastrous expansion in the US, which resulted in massive sell-offs and was a major embarrassment for the company.

But the most interesting thing about Parmar is that, aside from this information, the Internet – and the industry – seem to know very little about him at all.

SpinVox is in very serious trouble right now. They need a world-class CFO if they’re to have any hope of extricating themselves from the myriad questions surrounding not only their technology, but also their internal financial affairs. Is Parmar that CFO? Or is there something else going on here?

Parmar has told SpinVox staff he would be “working closely with the senior management team at SpinVox to develop the finance team and capabilities to fully support the business as we embark on the next exciting stages of our international growth”. Well, good luck, Mr Parmar. The technology industry will be watching.

  • http://patphelan.net Pat Phelan

    I think we all acknowledge that SpinVox is probably a car crash waiting to happen but give the guys a break.
    The guy seems to be qualified, he has two qualifications including the chartered qualification and also has a background in telecoms.
    Who did you think they would get?
    Accountants have Google too :-)

    • http://paybymob.net Liam Lowe

      Well said Pat.

  • http://www.keithwilley.com Keith Willey

    Well we funded Servista out of London Business School about ten years ago. We exited quickly when TXU came in as trade investor. Lost track since then but this has got to be one of the slowest fails of a dotboom biz…. Needless to say none of our MBAs involved in the disastrous latter stages. Just the Insead chap. ;-)

    Back on the main point – would any top tier CFO take this role without cast iron support/ guarantees from investors?

  • Si

    I’m not entirely surprised that they haven’t found a well known superstar CFO. Would anyone who already had a great reputation risk it by taking a front seat role in what may well turn out to be yet another web 2.no bloodbath?

    I’m not so sure. The prospect of tellng Domeq that her half million dollar salary isn’t going to fly till they start making profit probably isn’t that appealing either.

  • PuppetMaster

    Why get a real CFO? That would only tell CD to take a realistic pay packet and stop her from siphoning company funds into her personal side ventures.

  • insider

    You only need to dig a little deeper into what happened at Servista – he may well be a qualified accountant but that is all the man has going for him.

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