Infy's $20 Bn Target May Be Achieved, But Not By 2020

by CXOtoday News Desk    Jun 16, 2017

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IT services major Infosys, which had earlier set a $20 billion revenue target by 2020, is seeing troubled times, owing to challenges involving H-1B visa program, conflict within the top management, and even rumors of a stake sale by founders, not to mention the volatile markets where the company runs its business. However, the India’s second biggest IT firm still believes that the $20 billion revenue is still achievable - even though it may take a little longer.

Read more: Brexit: A Mixed Bag For Indian IT Sector

Infosys co-chairman Ravi Venkatesan said, the $20 Billion revenue target by 2020 as decided upon by CEO Vishal Sikka is achievable in terms of numbers. The time frame to achieve that is a different thing. Realistically, it does not look like they will be achievable by 2020, he believes.

In 2015, when CEO Vishal Sikka announced the ambitious number, it left hundreds of employees and stakeholders awestruck. The goals included $20 billion in revenue, profit margins of 30% and achieving $80,000 in revenue per employee. In the current scenario, Infosys has generated a revenue over $10 Billion, entering into 2017.  Venkatesan said, “The newly constituted committee of directors is working very closely with Vishal and the management to (see) what takes the place of these target.”

The IT major is also seeing a spate of exits in recent weeks, but at the same time recruiting senior executives to run its operations. Its Americas head and global head of manufacturing and retail unit, Sandeep Dadlani, has resigned. Sikka recently entrusted Dadlani with the additional responsibility of generating more revenue from the company’s new software business, including the artificial intelligence platform Nia.

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The latest exit puts a question on Sikka’s stint as CEO as nine senior executives have quit Infosys since Sikka took over as Infosys’s first non-founder CEO in August 2014. The key executives including former chief financial officer Rajiv Bansal, former head of manufacturing Sanjay Jalona, former head of healthcare and life sciences Manish Tandon and former head of BPO Gautam Thakkar, former head of consulting Sanjay Purohit, former head of BPO Anup Upadhyaya and former head of EdgeVerve Michael Reh resigned.

In December last year, Infosys sacked its former chief legal officer and EVP, David KennedyLast month, Sikka’s former SAP colleague and head of Infosys’s industrial internet business, Gordon Muehl, too resigned. Some have questioned Sikka’s management style, and whether he is finding it difficult to build a stable senior management team. 

The company found itself in troubled waters of late after founder NR Narayan Murthy spoke about is disenchantment with the poor firm amid what he termed as poor corporate governance. He had also talked about the high compensation offered to senior positions, particularly abroad.  All of these issues will now be considered and corrected one by one by a committee set up by the Infosys board.

Read more: Vishal Sikka vs Infosys: Corporate Governance In Question

Meanwhile, the company announced the appointment of Karmesh Vaswani as the Global Head – Retail, CPG & Logistics (RCL) and Nitesh Banga as the Global Head of Manufacturing. “I have worked closely with them (Vaswani and Banga) over the last three years and have tremendous faith in their passion for client success and their ability to help clients see and achieve their digital aspirations,” Sikka added.

Ex-Wipro executive Inderpreet Sawhney has also joined Infosys as group general counsel. The appointment is effective July 3, 2017, she replaces Gopi Krishnan Radhakrishnan, the acting general counsel of Infosys — who will be leaving the company later this month to pursue other opportunities.

Similarly most IT majors including Infosys are realizing that enhancing their digital capabilities is the only way to survive and thrive in this market, which makes the company very bullish on artificial intelligence and allied technologies. As Sikka wants employees to adopt Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning technologies at a faster pace to make a quicker transition from the cost-arbitrage.

“The board of directors at the company will now sit down together to arrive at better strategy which is also acceptable to the company’s promoters,” Venkatesan mentioned while bringing the company back on track. As the cliched saying goes: “Only time will suggest what course Infosys will take in the future.”