Pratap Khedkar named CEO of ZS

30 July 2021 2 min. read
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Management consultancy ZS has appointed Pratap Khedkar, a 21-year veteran of the firm, as CEO. The firm also appointed Sandra Forero as its first COO.

Khedkar succeeds Chris Wright, who has completed the maximum three terms as CEO. Wright, who has been at ZS since 1989, will become a principal emeritus.

“Chris has done a tremendous job during his tenure as CEO, and I’ll be leaning on his knowledge and guidance in the months and years ahead,” Khedkar said.

As chief executive officer, Khedkar will focus on accelerating ZS’s healthcare and life sciences portfolio – the firm’s primary industry focus. He will also work on boosting investment in technology, digital analytics, and software capabilities, according to a release from the firm.

Khedkar previously served as leader of ZS’ pharma and biotechnology practice for nearly a decade. Before joining ZS in 2000, he was an R&D researcher at GE focusing on marketing analytics.

He holds a PhD in computer science from UC Berkeley and a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi.

Pratap Khedkar and Sandra Forero - ZS

“Pratap is stepping into this role during an exciting period of growth and change at ZS,” said Wright, who oversaw 30% revenue growth last year amid surging pandemic-related demand. “We’re increasingly being called in by the companies we partner with to identify, advise on and adapt to the next big shifts in their respective industries. I’m confident that under Pratap’s counsel, the best days at ZS are ahead of us.”

The Evanston, IL-headquartered firm also announced the promotion of Sandra Forero to a newly created chief operating officer role. Forero has been at ZS for 20 years and most recently served as managing principal for the North America East region. She has also served as client service lead for two major biopharma clients, head of the integrated analytics practice, and chair of the firm’s inclusion and diversity council.

Prior to ZS, Forero was a consultant at Arthur D. Little. She holds an MBA from the University of Virginia and a BS in business administration from la Universidad de los Andes in Colombia.

“I welcome Sandra to this role and look forward to partnering with her. She’s a trusted and respected leader at ZS who is incredibly passionate about driving client impact, ensuring the growth and success of our people, and stewarding our culture,” Khedkar said.

ZS provides consulting in sales and marketing, strategy, operations, technology, and analytics. Aside from healthcare and life sciences clients, the firm also works with private equity, financial services, industrials, technology, and telecom companies. ZS has approximately 10,000 people in 28 offices across the Americas, Europe, and Asia.

The firm earlier this year bought Medullan, a Boston-headquartered digital health consulting firm with more than 80 employees.