Tata Sons announced the induction of Nirmalya Kumar, professor of marketing at London Business School, as a member of its group executive council from August 1, a statement said on Wednesday.

Kumar, 53, will be responsible for strategy at the group level and lend expertise in bringing customer centricity to the fore across the group companies. He will report to Tata Sons chairman Cyrus P Mistry.

Reputed to be among the world's leading thinkers on strategy and marketing, Kumar was included in the Thinker50, the biannual listing of top 50 management thinkers in the world and received their Global Village Award.

Graduating in BCom from Calcutta University, Kumar went on to do his MBA from University of Illinois and doctorate in marketing from Northwestern University, US.

Author of seven books, Kumar has also taught at the Harvard Business Scool, IMD (Switzerland), Kellog Graduate School and is on the board of governors of London Business School.

Tata Group, comprising over 100 operating companies in seven business sectors with businesses spanning 85 countries, employs over 450,000 people. Total revenues of the Tata companies taken together was US$100.09 billion (Rs.475,721 crore) in 2011-2012.

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