Exciting time for Infosys, says Nilekani

Mega meet: Infosys chairman Nandan Nilekani and CEO Salil Parekh at the company’s annual general meeting in Bengaluru on Saturday. DH Photo/S K Dinesh

India's second largest software exporter Infosys on Saturday said the company is going through an "exciting journey" as digital strategy is spurring growth.

"I am convinced that there is no better time than now for us to strategically chart our journey as a company," Infosys chairman Nandan Nilekani told shareholders at the 37th annual general meeting here.

According to Nilekani, the opportunities for the company arise from the changing needs of the industry. "Every industry, every sector is undergoing a tremendous transformation, driven by the digital revolution that engulfs us," he said.

Nilekani (63) rejoined the $10.94-billion IT major in August 2017, eight years after he resigned as CEO. Presiding over the AGM for the first time as chairman, Nilekani said digital challenges were pervading every space spanning media, entertainment, healthcare, financial services, retail and pharmaceuticals.

For 2017-18, Infosys earned $2.79 billion in revenue from digital services, which is about 25.5% of its total revenue.

The company has taken several steps during the year to remedy the concerns raised over stability and is on the verge of something momentous, Nilekani said.

"When I stepped into Infosys for the second time in August last year, one of the concerns that you raised was about the company's stability. We have taken several steps over the year to remedy this," he said.

Assuring shareholders of stability in the coming days, he said: "We have a very stable management team and board, and everybody is united and agrees that we are really on the verge of something momentous. The focus is now on relentless execution," he added.

Panaya sale questioned

Infosys faced heat from the shareholders on the sale of its subsidiary, Panaya. Most of the shareholders at the AGM questioned the company’s decision to buy and then sell the Israeli software company. Many questions posed to the company focused on the financial implications arising out of the Panaya deal. However, Infosys defended the decision of putting Panaya on the block.

"On all acquisitions, we take due diligence and, at the same time, are monitoring very closely the acquisitions that we have done," CFO M D Ranganath said.

The sale of three subsidiaries is expected to be completed by the end of the current financial year and will dispose of assets worth Rs 2,060 crore and liabilities worth Rs 324 crore.

On reclassification, an impairment loss of Rs 118 crore ($18 million) in respect of Panaya has been recognised by the company in the consolidated profit and loss for the quarter and the year ended March 31. The corresponding writedown in the investment value of Panaya in the standalone financial statements of Infosys is Rs 589 crore.

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