The industry has restructured itself, it has become more efficient. — SOM MITTAL, PRESIDENT, NASSCOM

Nasscom expects the sector to do well in the financial year 2013 on back of strong fundamentals and emerging trends in technology. The IT industry’s apex body is confident of maintaining its growth estimates at 11 per cent, the lower end of its estimates of posting an 11-14 per cent growth. In a conversation, Nasscom President Som Mittal, who says he is comfortable with the growth, also throws light on the industry and the impact of cyclone Sandy among others. Excerpts:

Are you comfortable with this 11 per cent growth?

I think this 11 per cent growth is very good under these circumstances. This is given the fact that there is so much economic turmoil across and uncertainties that still remain. I think even our base of about $69 billion, having the growth rate in double digits, is very good. I think it just shows that the fundamentals of our industry remain very strong. Customers see value in what we are doing and technology remains in the centre of change that’s happening.

What are the key drivers for business in this scenario?

We are seeing new drivers like mobile, social media and big data getting integrated into the mainstream, which is also driving our business. In the last 7-8 years, the industry has restructured itself, it has become more efficient. We are clearly seeing more non-linear models coming up and people using platform-based delivery. We are also seeing diversification across verticals and diversification across geographies which is actually helping us to fuel growth for the future.

Do you expect to maintain this growth next year as well?

We will give out our guidance in April next year. The transition that had to happen this year such as election in the US, changes happening in Europe and China are all behind us.

I think all that the early signals look positive for the coming year. Decision making is still slower, it takes much longer to conclude a deal but there is enough in the deal pipeline today.

Did hurricane Sandy have much impact on business?

It was unfortunate that so many people died. But I think since most of the operations are delivered offshore, we did not get much impacted. People were better prepared for what happened. Most of our concerns were around our customers — but on the business we did not see any significant impact. Global delivery centres would have shut down for a couple of days, but at the same time our customers businesses were also shut down. Centres in India were fully operational.

What is the role of the new committee headed by Narayana Murthy?

We are looking at what’s ahead for us. Nasscom always looks at the future. We are looking at the next 10 years scenario, what opportunities exist, and how should Nasscom be prepared for it. So that’s the focus. We have picked up members from our executive council. We are looking at what the future is, the new initiative that we should take, and what should we do for the various stakeholders that we have.

(This article was published on November 12, 2012)
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