Vivek is a born connector. With 35 years of experience in import and export consulting in India, it was a natural transition for him to continue his craft in Canada of connecting Canadian and Indian companies. Before immigrating to Canada, he served on the national board of Indo-Canadian Business Chamber (ICBC) for several years and as its National President for three consecutive years. Upon his move to Canada, he opened Savkur International Agencies, a bilateral trade organization, and continues to lobby to strengthen trade ties through the BC India Business Network which he founded in 2015 and is currently the CEO of.
With the Honourable Mary F. Y. Ng, Minister of Small Business and Export Promotion on speed dial, Vivek is a top advisor for Canadian government agencies to do business with Indian companies. In fact, he helped bring the Times of India Film Awards to Vancouver in 2013 and was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by the Governor General of Canada for his service and dedication to his peers, community and Canada.
Vivek became the Resident Director of the Indo Canadian Business Chamber in 2007, the Director of the Hope for Orphans Society in 2009 and a member of the Simon Fraser University Advisory Council in 2013, and currently sits on the advisory board for the Vancouver International South Asian Film Festival. As a member of the Indian Automotive Racing Club, he helped organize the first and second Himalayan car rallies, the first of its kind.
He currently is the President of the Canada India Education Council (Western Canada Chapter), an independent, national, not-for-profit, membership-based organization established to operate exclusively within the burgeoning Canada-India education corridor. The organization helps institutions, agents, and students to strategically position themselves in an increasingly fierce and competitive international environment. Combining corporate governance with the benefits of a public-private partnership, CIEC advocates for agencies, education consultants and advisors to develop a methodology that is financially sustainable and representative of academic excellence.
Birthplace: Dharwar, Karnataka, but my family moved to Mumbai when I was a baby due to World War II – the Japanese were planning to bomb South India and my parents became worried.
Came to Canada: 2007
Highest Level of Education: Commerce in University of Mumbai, Diploma in Management at Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad
Favourite Past-time: I am a workaholic. I am also an avid reader of international news. In my spare time, I like to pass on jokes.
Toughest Professional Decision:
Winding up everything in India and moving to Canada and was a huge decision for me. But I never had any doubt, I have always had self-confidence and self-reliance. I am a self-made man and a veteran in the trade, I knew I would succeed.
What advice would you give your younger self?
Increase your general knowledge and be aware of what is happening in your environment. And for youngsters out there – find a mentor. From a very young age, I was lucky enough to have mentors who were very strong business people – one of the country’s wealthiest men was in my circle. This is why I like to involve others, especially youth, into my community initiatives.
What does the future look like?
Making connections and continuing to work hard. I don’t think retirement is for me.