Bracing for the Storm
In letters issued on New Year's Eve, Azim Premji and Vishal Sikka, the heads of India's two largest IT companies, Wipro and Infosys, respectively, warned employees about the challenging times ahead. "I must say that the year 2016 seems to have raised questions and obstacles, on the path to a better world, which cannot be ignored," Premji said in his letter. He asked employees to increase their commitment to others, and find a common ground rather than focusing on conflicts. Sikka evoked a similar sentiment in his letter. "We must remember that operational excellence is an imperative for each one of us," he said. He urged employees to focus on delivering the best solutions in the smartest, fastest way possible, and "not give up or give in to weaker instincts."
Google CEO, Sundar Pichai, while on a short trip to India, announced the launch of 'Digital Unlocked' - a training programme for small and medium businesses (SMBs) in India which will help them understand how digital works. "With Internet, even small businesses can become large," Pichai said at the event. He announced the GoogleMyBusiness initiative which will enable SMBs to list on Google, even if they don't have a website. He also launched the Primer app, designed to teach SMBs digital marketing skills. Pichai visited his alma mater IIT Kharagpur, where he interacted with students. He regaled the audience with his hostel tales and shared insights about his journey so far.
Banking on Change
Banks Board Bureau Chief and former Comptroller and Auditor General of India, Vinod Rai, said that the bureau is planning to bring in major changes in the banking system, including improved pay structures and bonuses. "By next fiscal, we are looking at a far more attractive package for public sector banks with bonus, ESOPs, performance-linked variables - monetary or non-monetary benefits - to make it more attractive for professionals to enter PSBs," he said at an ASSOCHAM event in New Delhi. Rai informed that the bureau is considering the appointment of a full-time Director or Executive Director in public sector banks, besides the current posts of Chairman and Managing Director (CMD).
Banker Goes Viral
Viral Acharya, has been appointed the Deputy Governor of the Reserve Bank of India. A New York University professor, Acharya's appointment was much talked about on Twitter. While some were amused by his name, others appreciated his background, drawing similarities to that of former RBI Governor Raghuram Rajan. In fact, he has also co-authored several papers with Rajan. Acharya, 42, will take over as Deputy Governor for a three-year term, effective January 20, and will head the monetary policy and research cluster. The Central bank has four deputy governors; Acharya filled the place left vacant by Urjit Patel who was appointed as the RBI Governor.
Former Deutsche Bank co-CEO Anshu Jain has made a comeback. He has joined the US-based financial services firm Cantor Fitzgerald LP (CFLP) as President. Jain had left Deutsche Bank in June 2015 after struggling to rejuvenate the bank. "He has a deep understanding of the global capital markets, and strong expertise built over decades of leadership in the industry, making Anshu my ideal partner to drive growth during the next era of Cantor's development," said Cantor's Chairman and CEO, Howard Lutnick. Jain will be based in CFLP's headquarters in New York.