Wipro names Thierry Delaporte as CEO, MD to drive next phase of growthPTI | New Delhi | Updated: 29-05-2020 16:57 IST | Created: 29-05-2020 16:57 IST
IT major Wipro on Friday said Capgemini Group veteran Thierry Delaporte will join the company as its Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director with effect from July 6, 2020. He succeeds Abidali Z Neemuchwala, whose decision to step down from the company was announced in January this year. Neemuchwala, who had joined Wipro in April 2015 from Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), will relinquish his position as CEO and MD on June 1.
Rishad Premji will oversee the day-to-day operations of the company until July 5, Wipro said in a statement. Interestingly, Wipro rival Infosys had also roped in a former Capgemini executive, Salil Parekh to head the company as its CEO.
"Until recently, Thierry Delaporte was the Chief Operating Officer of Capgemini Group and a member of its group executive board. During his 25 year career with Capgemini, he held several leadership roles including that of CEO of the global financial services strategic business unit, and head of all global service lines," it said. He also oversaw Capgemini's India operations, and led the group's transformation agenda, conceptualising and driving several strategic programs across various business units, it added.
The development comes at a time when Wipro has been lagging behind peers like like Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), Infosys and HCL Technologies in terms of growth. TCS saw its revenue increase 7.1 per cent (constant currency) in FY20 over the previous fiscal, while Infosys and HCL Technologies posted 9.8 per cent and 16.7 per cent rise in topline, respectively, in the said period. Wipro, on the other hand, saw its IT services revenue grow 3.9 per cent in constant currency terms in FY20 over the last financial year. Delaporte's appointment also comes at a time when various industries across the world, including the Indian IT sector, are grappling with the impact of COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic has forced Indian IT companies to get almost all of their staff to work from home even as concerns of business uncertainty continue to linger. While players like Infosys, Wipro, Cognizant and WNS have refrained from giving a revenue growth outlook amid the uncertainties, firms are hopeful of recovery kicking in by the third quarter. Wipro Chairman Rishad Premji said: "Thierry has an exceptional leadership track record, strong international exposure, deep strategic expertise, a unique ability to forge long-standing client relationships, and proven experience of driving transformation and managing technological disruption. We believe that Thierry is the right person to lead Wipro in its next phase of growth," he added. Delaporte will be based in Paris and report to Rishad Premji.
"I look forward to working closely with Rishad, the board, senior leadership and the hugely talented employees of Wipro to turn a new chapter of growth and build a better tomorrow for all our stakeholders," Delaporte said. Delaporte began his career in 1992 as a Senior Auditor with Arthur Andersen. He is also the co-Founder and President of not-for-profit organisation Life Project 4 Youth. Sanchit Vir Gogia, Founder and CEO of Greyhound Research, said Delaporte is the first non-Indian to be appointed as the CEO of any large Indian IT services company. “Delaporte comes to Wipro at a rather difficult moment. One where Wipro's numbers from previous quarters are not very handsome and the markets are severely impacted due to COVID-19," he added. Delaporte has a great handle on the subject matter and brings along a wealth of expertise on some of the newer digital areas that Wipro really needs right now. If managed well, Thierry Delaporte could well be that knight in shining armour for Wipro, he added. Further, Wipro has also appointed Deepak M Satwalekar to its board.
Satwalekar, a widely-respected financial services professional, has been appointed to Wipro's board of directors for five years effective July 1, 2020, subject to the approval of the shareholders, a regulatory filing said. "With his deep repository of knowledge spanning across the financial services sector, sharp business acumen, understanding of technology and as a strong votary of the highest standards of corporate governance, his invaluable experience will immensely benefit Wipro," Premji said.
Meanwhile, earlier this year, Arundhati Bhattacharya had resigned from her position as an independent director with effect from June 30. Bhattacharya is joining Salesforce as Chairperson and CEO for the India operations, Wipro said citing her resignation letter.