Avinash Kirpal is a mentor for small and medium enterprises particularly those trying to internationalise their activities through exporting or sourcing.

Kirpal graduated from Oxford and then worked in the Tata Administrative Service for 30 years in various positions including Public Affairs Officer for the Tata group in New Delhi, Corporate Planning Manager for Tata Exports Ltd and Vice President of Tata International Ltd.

In the mid 1990’s large exporting companies were directed by Government to increase sourcing from small enterprises Kirpal was given the responsibility to develop small sector exports. He focussed on developing exports from small artisanal units to sophisticated markets like the U.S, Western Europe and Japan. This was a major shift from Tata’s earlier focus on exporting heavy engineering products mainly to developing countries.

During the last ten years Kirpal has been Advisor: programs for the development of small & medium enterprises at the International Management Institute (IMI) New Delhi as well as editor of its quarterly magazine – Interface. While at IMI he did several international consultancy assignments in the area of small enterprise development for the World Bank, the United Nations Development Program, the International Trade Centre and the International Labour Organization.

His writings include “The SME and the Export Development Company” published by the International Trade Centre, Geneva and translated into French and Spanish of which he is the co-author, “Womentrepreneurs – Inspiring stories of success” published by Sage Publications, and also made available in Hindi and Marathi, as well as articles in management journals. He has travelled to over 40 countries on work.

His key skill area is expertise and experience in the development of SMEs, particularly related to exports. At the macro level: what the state can do in terms of institutions, policies and infrastructure for promoting exports of products and services supplied by SMEs. At the micro level: what individual SMEs can do to internationalise their businesses. Monitoring and evaluation of programs relating to SMEs.