“Watershed” moment as Infosys recruits first external CEO

Following news that Vishal Sikka will take over the position as CEO of Infosys, Tom Reuner, principal analyst at Ovum, believes this to be a “watershed moment for the company.”

“Sikka will be the first CEO that is neither part of the founding generation nor an insider from Infosys,” he says.

The announcement comes after a string of high profile resignations of senior executives, many of them had been touted as potential successor to the current CEO S. D. Shibulal, that have led to perceptions of an overbearing influence of the executive chairman Narayana Murty whom Shibulal succeeded.

“Vishal Sikka was highly regarding within SAP and his remit was to foster innovation,” Reuner adds.

“This mindset could be conducive to lead Infosys back to its past glory. Even though this will be his first appointment as CEO, Vishal Sikka combines the cultural affinity to the Indian corporate culture with vast experience in the global marketplace.

“In the end much of his success will depend on how he will work with Mr. Murthy who despite the intention to step down will remain a dominating figure at the helm of Infosys – as such there will be more surprises.

“Sikka’s task is a daunting one: To lead the erstwhile poster boy for the success of the Indian IT sector, that has been epitomised in Thomas Friedman’s seminal work “The World is Flat”, back to its former glory.

“We envisage a bumpy road ahead for Sikka.”

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