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Meet Laxman Narasimhan, Starbucks’ New Indian-Origin CEO 

The coffee giant drips into a new era with Narasimhan — who curiously lacks any restaurant business management experience on his impressive portfolio

From Twitter to Adobe, Alphabet, IBM, and Microsoft, Indian-origin CEOs are making their powerful presence felt within the world of international brands. Taking a step away from the usual tech company portfolio, however, is Laxman Narasimhan — a Pune-born executive that will take the reins of global coffee giant Starbucks on October 1st, 2022. 

Narasimhan’s Rise Through The Ranks 

Laxman Narasimhan

Raise in Pune through the 1970s, Narasimhan started of his career as an engineer, graduating from the city’s College of Engineering Pune — the second-oldest engineering college in the country, behind IIT Roorkee. He would continue to seek higher education throughout his life — pursuing an MA in German and International Studies from The Lauder Institute, University of Pennsylvania, and an MBA in Finance from the Warton School, University of Pennsylvania. 

For nineteen years, Narasimhan worked for McKinsey, eventually becoming a director and location manager for the management consultancy giant. In 2012, he joined PepsiCo, eventually rising to the position of chief commercial officer. 

He then became the CEO of Reckitt Benckiser in September 2019, replacing fellow Indian Rakesh Kapoor, before setting his sights on Starbucks. 

How Much Will Narasimhan Earn At Starbucks? 


As one of the highest-profile beverage companies in the world, Starbucks comes with plenty of perks — and money is certainly one of them. 

Beginning the new inning with Starbucks corps, Laxman Narasimhan will draw $1.3 million as his annual base salary. He will also get some bonuses to chill down the incentives he will be relinquishing by leaving Reckitt Benckiser. These bonuses are $1.5 million cash signing bonus and $9.25 million value replacement equity grant. Moreover, he will also get annual equity awards equating to $13.6 million, starting from fiscal year 2023. 

In his statement, Narasimhan said that he has “been offered an opportunity to return to the United States and although it is difficult to leave, it is the right decision for me and my family.” 

“I am humbled to be joining this iconic company at such a pivotal time, as the Reinvention and investments in the partner and customer experiences position us to meet the changing demands we face today and set us up for an even stronger future,” he added. 

Lead Image: @lakslnarasimhan/Twitter