Infosys on Friday termed a media report that states the company’s founders will sell their 12.75% stake valued at around Rs 28,000 crore, as mere speculation, and stated that there was no such development. A report had stated that the founders led by N R Narayana Murthy are exploring the possibility of a sale with their holdings to be sold in tranches and not enbloc.A statement from Infosys said, “This speculation has already been categorically denied by the promoters. The company further reiterates that it has no information on any such development. We would like to appeal to the media not to fuel such speculative stories as they are likely to harm the interests of the company and all its stakeholders.” Reacting to this development, the Infosys scrip slipped by over 3% in early morning trade but later recovered during the day to end at Rs 948.65 with a dip of 0.80% on BSE.The founders of Infosys – N R Murthy, Nandan Nilekani, S Gopalakrishnan, S D Shibulal and K Dinesh still come under the promoter category despite having no active role in the company. This report comes in the background of differences between the Murthy and the Infosys Board.
Murthy in the recent past had publicly questioned the corporate governance standards of Infosys especially on the high compensation being paid to CEO Vishal Sikka and the unusual severance package to former CFO Rajiv Bansal. He also questioned the revised higher salary being paid to COO U B Pravin Rao.
The Infosys board led by chairman, R Seshasayee, defended the company’s position claiming that it had not slipped from the corporate governance standards set by the founders. Those supporting Murthy believe that the Board of Infosys had given into the demands of the CEO and sought its reconstitution. Infosys recently announced the appointment of Ravi Venkatesan as the co-chairman.