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Feel honoured to lead Infosys, says Vishal Sikka

BT Online Bureau     June 12, 2014

Vishal Sikka said he felt honoured to lead India's second-largest technology outsourcer and was looking forward to working with "talented Infoscions" around the world. Sikka was on Thursday named Infosys' new chief executive officer.

This is the first time the nation's second-largest software services exporter will have a non-founder as CEO.

Sikka, 47, will replace S D Shibulal, one of the seven engineers who founded Infosys in 1981, from August 1, Infosys said in a statement.

Also, the firm's Executive Chairman N R Narayana Murthy and Executive Vice Chairman S Gopalakrishnan will step down on June 14. Murthy will be designated as chairman emeritus from October 11.

Sikka, who will also be the company's MD, quit SAP in May. He comes in at a time when Infosys has had four straight years of narrowing margins. Besides, almost a dozen senior executives have left since last year when co-founder Murthy returned as chairman.

Murthy brought his son Rohan as his executive assistant.

Infosys said the chairman's office would be dissolved and Rohan would leave the company on Saturday, when the company will hold its annual shareholders meeting in Bangalore.

A Stanford University computer science Ph.D graduate, Sikka oversaw the development of new products, including a platform for quickly analysing large databases as the chief technology officer at SAP, the world's largest maker of business-management software.

His appointment brings down the curtain on a year of suspense, which saw an 11 senior level exists since June last year, when Murthy was brought back from retirement to head the company and put it back on a high-growth trajectory at a time when peers like TCS and HCL Tech were out-performing Infosys.

Analysts feel that his appointment to the corner office at the company will end the uncertainty at the Bangalore-based firm.

The Infosys scrip was down 0.19 per cent on the BSE in the afternoon trade.

With inputs from Associated Press and PTI

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