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ImageArun Sarin, Vodafone

One of the most successful CEOs of British telecom giant Vodafone, Arun Sarin, quit the company in the July 2008 to don a new challenge.

During his five year tenure at the world's largest mobile firm, Sarin is credited for acquiring a controlling stake in one of India's biggest mobile phone companies, Hutchison Essar. Under him Vodafone posted group revenue of 35.5 billion pounds for the year ending March 31, an increase of 14.1 per cent, and organic growth of 4.2 per cent. This came in marginally higher than market consensus, provided by the company, of 35.2 billion to 35.4 billion pounds.

Under Sarin, Vodafone expanded aggressively into emerging markets, including Romania, the Czech Republic and Turkey. Sarin visited India before his exit along with his successor to participate in Vodafone-Essar board meeting, triggering speculation that he may join Tatas, but officials of the Indian conglomerate debunked any such report.

Post-exit Sarin planned a trekking trip to Himalayas before settling in California. Recently, Sarin, 53, who quit Vodafone at the pinnacle of his career, was speculated to be the most sought-after contender for the position of Yahoo CEO, after the Jerry Yang's exit.

Sarin, however, said he was not keen on the position. Sarin is looking at alternative roles at other US public companies as well as at a private equity firm, the Financial Times wrote recently.

The India-born US citizen is an IIT Kharagpur alumnus and has an MBA degree from University of California, Berkley.