Narayana Murthy defends changes at Infosys, mum on 'brilliant' son Rohan Murty's future

Jan 11 2014, 17:53 IST
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With NR Narayana Murthy at helm, Infosys is back to being IT bellwether. With NR Narayana Murthy at helm, Infosys is back to being IT bellwether.
SummaryInfosys changes here to stay, says Narayana Murthy, backs Rohan, hints new CEO may be from within co.

Infosys Ltd executive chairman executive chairman NR Narayana Murthy vigorously defended the frequent changes at India’s second-largest IT services company like the creation of two new president posts and a surprise decision to disband the Executive Council as measures that would instill stability for the firm. He also dropped enough hints that the next Infosys CEO could be from within the company.

Ever since Murthy came back to Infosys on June 1, 2013, tumultuous changes were witnessed at the IT firm — the creation of a new governing structure and more importantly exits of senior executives, which also included two board members.

Providing the rationale behind these changes at the announcement of the quarterly results on Friday, Murthy said, “When we had got this internal report on expanding the Executive Council, we went ahead and did it. But later when we decided on the two presidents, we realised that the new structure is such that they will have their own governance structure and the Executive Council will become superfluous. The elimination of the Executive Council is not going to create any issue in the future growth trajectory of the corporation. bit the bullet and took a tough decision,” he added.

The council had over 20 members and this will cease to exist from April 1, 2014. The two new presidents appointed for Infosys are BG Srinivas and UB Pravin Rao with responsibilities divided between them and reporting to CEO SD Shibulal.

Murthy said that Infosys is a large organisation and undertaking the desired changes would take time, adding, “We are bringing about a transformational change.” However, these frequent changes has brought a sense of disquiet as there is already a core team attached to the chairman’s office and the new structure creates another duality within Infosys. Responding to an analyst’s query, Murthy said: “It is good for them. It is good for us. They have added value to our company. We wish them good luck. We are adding value to the industry by providing good leaders to the world.”

Murthy said the decision on creation of dual president post was taken by a group of senior executives who felt it was the best structure under the current environment. Terming the exits as painful for the organisation, Murthy said Infosys had enough depth in leadership to fill in these gaps. “We are very confident that this company

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