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Another Infoscion walks into iGATE

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A file photo of Ashok Vemuri.
A file photo of Ashok Vemuri.

Another former Infoscion has followed the footsteps of Phaneesh Murthy and joined iGATE as its CEO.

Ashok Vemuri, the former head of Americas of Infosys, will be the new CEO from September 16 and he will also sit on the board of iGATE, according to a statement from the company.

Nasdaq-listed iGATE, since May, has been hunting for a replacement for Phaneesh Murthy after he was sacked as CEO by the Board for failing to disclose a relationship with an employee.

“Ashok brings a tremendous track record of success and accomplishments working across a range of businesses at Infosys, where he was directly responsible for driving growth for numerous multi-billion dollar businesses,” said iGATE, co-founder Sunil Wadhwani, in a statement.

Further, Gerhard Watzinger, who assumed the role of Interim president and CEO after the exit of Murthy, will remain with iGATE, and play an “advisory role temporarily to assist with Vemuri’s transition,” the company said.

Vemuri, who graduated from IIM Ahmedabad, established and ran the financial services and insurances business for Infosys for nine years, making it the largest business unit within the company and was tipped to be takeover from the current CEO S.D. Shibulal after he retires in 2015. Vemuri was also among the top three highest paid executives of Infosys last year.

“He will bring in aggression, suaveness and being based in the US, he is familiar with their culture, an important factor nowadays,” said Kris Lakshmikanth, founder of recruitment firm, Head Hunters India.

But Vemuri has the difficult task of reducing a whopping debt of $700 million which iGATE took to acquire Patni Computers.

In its second quarter earnings, iGATE recorded better than expected revenue growth and strong margins and the stock has gone up 77 per cent during the last three months, according to Nasdaq data.

Industry watchers believe that along with Vemuri, a few other Infosys executives may also walk over to iGATE. Names of these individuals could not be immediately ascertained.

venkatesh.ganesh@thehindu.co.in

(This article was published on September 12, 2013)
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