Infosys in positive mood as Nandan Nilekani Returns

Mumbai: Infosys co-founders led by N R Narayana Murthy has got their wish with the appointment of Nandan Nilekeni as the chairman of the IT major, replacing R Seshasayee, who quit under their pressure.

Talking about Nilekani, he was CEO of the company between 2002 and 2007 and is credited as the architect of the world’s largest biometric ID card programme better known as Aafhaar.

Co-chairman Ravi Venkatesan has also resigned, although he would be the independent director. Also following the same route was two other independent directors – Jeffery S Lehman and John Etchemendy.

Read:- Vishal Sikka not joining HP Enterprise

This latest development brought about a near-complete overhaul of the 9-member Infosys board, meeting persistent and pivotal demands of the founders led by Murthy.

There is no denying the fact that Infosys faced a leadership crisis after first non-founder chief executive Vishal Sikka got out of the fray, blaming founders for slander.

Read:- Vishal Sikka Resigns As Infosys CEO

On the same day, the Board in what can be termed as uncharacteristic move, made a scathing attack on Murthy, blaming his “misguided campaign” for Sikka’s resignation.

According to experts, Murthy and other former executives such as ex-CFO V Balakrishnan are of the opinion that their concerns for past two-three months pertained to alleged lapses in corporate governance, including irregularities in the $200 million Israeli deal.

Plenty of institutional investors such as HDFC Asset Management, ICICI Prudential Asset Management and Birla SunLife Asset Management – who together own around 10 percent of Infosys shares – also written in a very authoritative way to the  Board seeking return of Nilekani, arguing that he enjoyed the confidence of clients, shareholders and employees.

 Seshasayee, whose resignation along with those of other key executives including Sikka has been accepted by Board, said, “Nandan is an ideal leader for Infosys at this stage in company’s development.”

“His appointment will allow Infosys to focus on strategic changes it needs to make, in order to capitalise on the attractive opportunities in the years ahead,” he said.