Datuk (Dr) Vinod Sekhar is the Chairman and Chief Executive of the PETRA Group, which strives to build global businesses that provide sustainable solutions to address challenges and real-world problems facing humanity.
PETRA Group’s businesses are involved in a diverse range of sectors including sustainable technologies, infrastructure, agriculture, lifestyle, media and news, research and advocacy. The Group has a global presence with operations in more than 9 countries across Asia, Australia, Europe and North America.
Datuk Vinod had embarked on his first business at the age of 21 where he started the Vincent Siefer Clothing Co while he was still a student in the United States studying molecular biology.
In 1990, Datuk Vinod formed and became the CEO of the STI Group – businesses include the world’s smallest optic engine, the first circular abrasive discs, Southeast Asia’s first commercial Internet company, first virtual reality companies in the US, among others.
After the Asian Financial crisis, in 1997, his company STI merged with other international interests and PETRA Group was formed, named after Datuk Vinod’s eldest daughter.
As an advocate for social capitalism, Datuk (Dr) Vinod believes that business interests and societal concerns should go hand in hand, which acts as the basis of the PETRA Group. He champions “simple principles of a civilised society”, where all business owners must work towards sustainable wealth creation to positively impact the lives of people and communities while remaining profitable.
He is the founder of the Vinod Sekhar Foundation that undertakes various initiatives to alleviate poverty, provide healthcare and education, and support the most vulnerable communities.
Datuk Vinod is also the Honorary Consul General of St. Vincent & the Grenadines to Singapore, Malaysia and Thailand.