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Old 24th August 2017, 16:20   #61
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

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Originally Posted by hserus View Post
So this looks like the posters on the thread are divided between supporting the promoters and supporting Sikka.

I am not even sure there's any middle ground possible here.

True - there were several entrenched fiefdoms, classes of employees (long serving ones with high share values from stock ops in the early days vs recent entrants), several middle managers promoted just to handle the huge influx of freshers and now facing the ax after Trump and Brexit, a lot of rot that required drastic surgery, of course at the expense of the various poor fellows who got fired - or rather given arbitrarily low performance evaluations and made to leave.

There are reports of people trying to organize trade unions of IT sector employees so this sort of rot is certainly a major contributory factor that will make the life of any future CEO in this industry the same sort of misery that CEOs in manufacturing and other sectors have faced for a long time.

I guess we can blame the original promoters of this and several other large IT majors for their lack of foresight in failing to anticipate the market moving away from poorly trained junior staff to a few senior staff along with automation, besides the US and British governments moving to protect their own citizens from being laid off and jobs outsourced by cracking down on the flagrant abuse of work visa programs. Both those trends were visible miles away and yet industry (not just the currently headless Infosys) was woefully unprepared.
While not trying to push on either side, it looks to me like the argument from Sikka's side is still not addressing the finance part.

This is how the arguments look to me. I may be wrong.

He is a great strategist with a vision
|
He has a comparatively flashy pay and lifestyle
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He is responsible for some questionable recruitment and firing
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He or the board that supported him has a lot of unanswered questions about the Panaya deal
|
So what if some millions were lost, thats just the way it is. Its still peanuts compared to Infy's worth.
|
They were not a real tech company to start with either way.

To me, apart from the first point, nothing else is valid to any company to make one person stay bending its ways.

Last edited by ashokrajagopal : 24th August 2017 at 16:27.
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Old 24th August 2017, 16:43   #62
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

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And in such a case an independent CEO would have very little say in the running of the company.

Not to mention the board becoming packed with nominees of the promoters.

Same mess, I’m afraid - I am not sure any independent CEO will want to come in. Probably end up promoting as CEO a senior Infy exec who is acceptable to the founders and willing to continue hewing to their wishes.
CEO is answerable to the board. Whether it is an outsider CEO reporting to an outsider board or a home grown CEO reporting to a promoter heavy board, the CEO is never independent.

I think it is better that the promoters run the company according to their vision. Let them retain the values that built the company (and perish) than becoming just another 'lala' company.
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Old 24th August 2017, 16:50   #63
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

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Originally Posted by ashokrajagopal View Post
He is a great strategist with a vision
...
To me, apart from the first point, nothing else is valid to any company to make one person stay bending its ways.
1. Vision and ability to execute on it

2. An ability to connect with the company’s customers and retain / acquire them.

In this sense the ceo is the company’s top salesman, top product manager and top customer support executive as well.

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Originally Posted by DuHasstMich View Post
It's actually not even a CEO to CEO comparison, it's more of a comparison between the Owner and the Employee! The owner with loads of cash in the bank does not hesitate being spotted in a Corolla, because he is getting a gigantic payout, but the employee on the other hand does not have the same financial situation, and will want a better lifestyle even on current terms.
Very true. Would be true even if he took a symbolic one rupee or one dollar salary which many CEOs do.

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Originally Posted by rrsteer View Post
but the inherent weakness of corporate structure in a large company that stifles innovation and decision making.
This one part is the same with both IBM and Infy. IBM has had several decades more in which to ossify of course. And they’ve had some truly great CEOs in the past that have pulled them back from the brink of bankruptcy with bold and game changing plays.
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Old 24th August 2017, 18:40   #64
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

At the outset my empathy is not with NRN at all. I am waiting for the real facts to unfold. The fun has just started. Wait till a few class action law suits remind NRN that Infosys is a listed company and his single digit shareholding does not entitle him to run the place except on merit.

When NRN came back at the helm in 2013 Infosys suffered a spate of 8 or more senior resignations in 6 months including V.Balakrishnan who used to be CFO. Those resignations spoke something about NRN's ageing style and lack of direction. The same V.Balakrishnan is now giving interviews by the hour right now backing NRN. I am truly intrigued! Allegations are being hurled via anonymous whistle blowers and without proving anything & NRN is using it as ammunition. Who is instigating these anonymous whistle blowers. If you read the media it is very clear which articles are inserts through a friendly journalist. NRN is a master of media management and it is showing again. Now he is using the threat of unsubstantiated attacks in public media against the Infosys Board to make them heel.

In a four-page statement, the company board accused the iconic founder of waging a "campaign against the board and the company" and using the threat of media attacks to demand management changes and make inappropriate demands that were inconsistent "with his stated desire for stronger governance." Murthy's "continuous assault" is the primary reason that Sikka has resigned despite strong board support, Infosys' Board's statement said.

The Infosys board and management have previously always adopted a placatory stance in public, often saying that Murthy holds an important role in the company and his inputs would be valued. Murthy in turn has demanded that the board adopt certain changes in policy, failing which he would attack board members in public, a threat carried out when the board did not agree. Not only will Infosys have an uphill climb getting a new real CEO with vision it will also struggle to get people of caliber to join its Board now.
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Old 24th August 2017, 20:54   #65
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Oh dear. The expected and completely not ideal outcome happened :(

http://www.news18.com/news/business/...s-1500757.html

Seshasayee AND Ravi Venkatesan as well are out. The board is likely to be gutted with more people being eased out and replaced by people friendly to the founders.

This is going to turn into a long long spiral downwards, I'm afraid.
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Old 24th August 2017, 21:40   #66
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

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Originally Posted by hserus View Post
Oh dear. The expected and completely not ideal outcome happened :(
http://www.news18.com/news/business/...s-1500757.html
Seshasayee AND Ravi Venkatesan as well are out. The board is likely to be gutted with more people being eased out and replaced by people friendly to the founders.
This is going to turn into a long long spiral downwards, I'm afraid.
Hserus, I have read each of your posts on this thread. You clearly understand how senior leaderships function and how Boards work.

Fully agree Seshasayee resigning is a sign of deep deep malice. He is a thorough professional, a gentleman and a tough no nonsense person. It is so very sad that NRN choose the media to launch his attacks instead of talking things over. Even the Board's letter to the Stock Exchange which must have been written with careful thought was not heeded by NRN as a sign to arbitrate rather than yell through the media. While I have no doubt about the immense competence of NN, Infosys' sheen for clean management has been lost. I wonder if Sikka's U.S. lawyers are preparing for a defamation suit against NRN. Big names that stood like giants over corporate India yesterday are no more or only a shadow of their former self - Modi Group, JK Group, Dalmias, DCM and many others. Inability to change with the times, infighting over succession, not being able to retain top management were all reasons. I would not be surprised if in the next 10 years Infosys gets bought over by some other IT giant. NN's well deserved reputation and capabilities could still turn the tide only if NRN grows up and lets NN get on with it.
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Old 24th August 2017, 21:49   #67
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

For those of you who are interested in watching the press conference and listening to the two investor calls that happened on 18th August, they have now been made available by Infosys on the below link.

https://www.infosys.com/investors/ne...-aug-2017.aspx

The Youtube video of the press conference only is below.

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Old 25th August 2017, 10:50   #68
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

1. All Board members other than 2 as required by promoters have "offered to resign".

2. Largest institutional shareholders Franklin Templeton, HDFC Asset management and LIC backing promoters completely and want Nilekani's return.

For now, it's game over.

Surprisingly doomsday predictions are ONLY from folks having little or no stake in Infy but it's obviously irrelevant to the majority.

Note body language in video.
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Old 25th August 2017, 10:58   #69
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Well, I find 2 major factors on this topic that I feel could be a reason.
1. The corporate DNA
2. The corporate maturity

The corporate DNA is something that is embedded in the entire organization from the lowest to the CFOs. Earlier we saw people working for organizations for the entire life time which is changing, both from the employers perspective and employees. This has given rise to a very diverse cultural DNA. When an employee rise to the top to become the CXO of that organization the DNA is intact but when a CXO gets parachuted into it, things change for good or bad and mostly it's for bad as they wouldn't know what the employees has gone through to get the organization where it is now, while in the earlier scenario the same employee has grown from tough times and reached there (provided the selfishness doesn't hit by then)

The corporate maturity issue is prevalent in every aspects of our culture. Rather than sit back, take the back seat and guide the younger generations, we continue to want the power till the last breath, be it politics, family, organization.
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Old 25th August 2017, 11:42   #70
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Ah. Panneerselvam mode has been engaged.

http://www.ecoti.in/qJZ2ua

Nilekani claims that he is only there temporarily and will leave as soon as a suitable CEO is identified.

Meanwhile all but two board members have offered to resign.
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Old 25th August 2017, 13:05   #71
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

If the board wholeheartedly supported Sikka and if it seems like Sikka did not perform upto his own promises, it raises questions about the board too. And I really believe his growth was to happen through acquisitions.

I hope in a month or so with Nandan at helm to oversee things, everything will be out including Panaya deal. Severance package to Sikka doesnt seem similar to the others that he negotiated

For all the blah blah about automation etc, revenue per employee came down during Sikkas tenure. I am mighty hopeful about Infosys coming through all this.

Last edited by srishiva : 25th August 2017 at 13:10.
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Old 25th August 2017, 14:27   #72
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

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For all the blah blah about automation etc, revenue per employee came down during Sikkas tenure. I am mighty hopeful about Infosys coming through all this.
My relative works at Infosys. From what I could understand from her, red-tape and a non-performing middle management worsened during his tenure. There was a lot of typical MBA "fluff" being thrown around in meetings and most often, people who're at the lowest level were being made scapegoats for failing to achieve what was supposed to be a team effort. Yes, most of these managers must have existed earlier. But if you are a visionary, you must transform the company mindset before focusing on its product mix. No product mix can be successful if you use the same attitude and mindset that your people have used for decades.

Members here are commenting about how CEO perks are "pennies" when compared against the benefits that the leadership brought in. The share price of a company is never the right metric to judge it's performance. Despite this limitation, if we look at the graph of Infosys over the last three years, there has been nothing spectacular. It has been business as usual, perhaps in a slightly more challenging environment. Instead of ridiculing the people who started, led and nurtured this company and set an example for inclusive corporate vision and growth for the world to see, let us wish the new team well.
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Old 25th August 2017, 15:34   #73
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Now that the game is over, time for celebrations!

1. After entire Board members resign prediction of early Diwali for investors!! Share price goes up by another 2%!!

https://m.economictimes.com/markets/...w/60203694.cms

2. Company in a complete mess - needs tough makeover and a big bloody mess to clean up!!

http://www.firstpost.com/business/in...r-3971829.html

(already indicated in an earlier post of mine)

3. Ex employees support Murthy and slam complete board

http://economictimes.indiatimes.com/...w/60211744.cms

This is probably the first time in corporate history that share prices actually increase after the entire board resigns!

Last edited by AMG Power : 25th August 2017 at 15:50.
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Old 25th August 2017, 18:29   #74
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Now with Nandan back and Sesh and some others out, can we hope to see the three Panaya investigation reports to be made public?
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Old 25th August 2017, 18:45   #75
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Default Re: Promoter-driven companies unable to cede control to professional managers (e.g. Infosys)?

Nandan's investors call today was a good listen. Hope he works his magic again. (I say magic because I know how Infoscions looked up to him when he was around.) So did the shareholders and investors.

Chatter from within the campus points to two points..
-1- The raises and severance packages the top tier, including Sikka gave themselves were a bit over the top. (When things were far from hunky dory)

-2- Sikka talked about transforming Infy into a 20 Billion company in two more years. With the company presently at 8.x Billion, that was a BIG challenge; he'd not have made it. Leaving now "due to distractions" was the best thing to happen for Dr. Sikka.

People are priming up their Demat accounts to buy Infy and be part of the Nandan 2.0 effect.

God Speed!
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