New era for India-Australia as Ms Petula Thomas becomes Director of Indo-Australia Chamber of Commerce

Exciting news for the India-Australia relationship – Ms Petula Thomas has been appointed the new Director of the Indo-Australian Chamber of Commerce.

Petula worked with the British Deputy High Commission (BDHC), Australian Trade Commission (Austrade) and British Airways in Chennai over the past 15 years and brings a wealth of experience in strategic leadership, international relations, marketing and business development.

Petula is a passionate innovator and supporter of Women in Leadership, so I feel she will make a big positive difference in this role.


She is also a strong communicator.

We need strong and effective communication to enhance the India-Australia role and to make it easier for business of both countries to get together.

I hope the IACC can pioneer more exchange of people, more two-way missions, great education, more collaboration, improved cross-cultural understanding and positive steps to ensure that business in both countries know best what works in each country.

By the way – Petula has an amazing track record, winning four global and regional performance awards from the Foreign & Commonwealth Office in London, when she headed Consular Operations for South India, leading on Customer Engagement for the MENASA region (Middle East North Africa and South Asia) and Communications/Digital strategy for India.

Petula has worked with Austrade, Australian Government, where she received commendation from the Deputy CEO Austrade for successfully delivering on multi-city Industry events in India & Australia. During her career with British Airways Plc. she received a Regional CASAMEA award (Central Asia South Asia Middle East & Africa) for Revenue Development/Sales from British Airways Plc.

Petula has a First class Masters Degree in Science and recent qualifications in Project Management and Customer Relationship Management (including Sales, Marketing and E-commerce).

We wish her every success and happiness in the important new role.

Author: Stephen Manallack

Former President, Australia India Business Council, Victoria and Author, You Can Communicate; Riding the Elephant; Soft Skills for a Flat World (published by Tata McGraw-Hill INDIA); Communicating Your Personal Brand. Director, EastWest Academy Pty Ltd and Trainer/Speaker/Mentor in Leadership, Communication and Cross Cultural Communication. Passionate campaigner for closer western relations with India. Stephen Manallack is a specialist on “Doing Business with India” and advisor/trainer on “Cross-Cultural Understanding”. He is a Director of EastWest Academy Pty Ltd which provides strategic advice and counsel regarding business relations with India. A regular speaker in India on leadership and global communication, his most recent speaking tour included a speech to students of the elite Indian university, Amity University, in Noida. He also spoke at a major Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) global summit, the PR Consultants Association of India in Delhi, the Symbiosis University in Pune and Cross-Cultural Training for Sundaram Business Services in Chennai. He has visited India on business missions on 10 occasions and led three major trade missions there. He provides cross-cultural training – Asia and the west.

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