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Infosys looks beyond the billion news
Our Corporate Bureau
24 April 2004

Mumbai: After becoming the first stock exchange-listed Indian IT company to cross the $1 billion mark, information technology major and bellwether, Infosys Technologies Ltd, is now gearing up to become a global major. The company expects to consolidate its presence in the Indian sub-continent.

Inosys will increase its headcount across the globe and is planning to recruit an additional 8,000 to 10,000 employees from all cultures and countries, according to Infosys managing director, CEO and president, Nandan M Nilekani.

The company, which had recruited four major industry experts to head its newly-formed Infosys Consulting Inc, will also add another 75 consultants in the first year of operations scaling up to 500 in the second year.

Infosys will recruit from all around the world, and the recruitment would not be culture-specific or country-specific, Nilekani said and added that the recent acquisition of the Australian firm, Expert Information Service, had provided it around 330 Australian employees.

The IT company's total workforce stood at 25,000 as on March 31, 2004, and the addition would scale it up by 30,000 within this fiscal itself.

On Infosys Consulting, he said it was yet to get clients. The new company would integrate all the three subsidiaries to offer world-class services and focus on constant innovation, redefining the rules of the business.

He also noted that the line between IT management and operations management had grown "thinner", the new rules would favour service models that tightly integrate IT services with business process management.

Describing ,the new role of Infosys as one of "proactive problem definers" rather than "reactive problem solvers", Nilekani said that Infosys would take a lead in leveraging the global delivery model as pioneered and perfected by the company, to help clients derive maximum strategic benefit. "The game has changed for those who develop traditional solutions without the strengths of global delivery. The new paradigm of strategic global outsourcing will provide the flexibility to select what to outsource, when to outsource and how to leverage global delivery throughout the value chain. While newcomers grapple to decode the genes of the current global delivery model, Infosys will focus on evolving next generation processes," he said.

In addition, scalability would play a big role in determining the leaders and would become the key differentiator. Emphasising that scalability and global delivery complement each other, Nilekani said, "Players will have to master the essentials of scalability within the context of global delivery. At Infosys, we have decentralized the organization, its systems and controls, to create multiple engines of growth. At the same time, we will manage global competencies, global processes and global aspirations."

Commenting on the next growth phase of Infosys, Nilekani said would focus on customer-centricity, meeting shareholder expectations and building a multi.cultural workforce - a seamlessly integrated team of talented, global professionals. The company was already geared to meet these challenges given its organization into multiple business units focused on clients' businesses, he added. ...

On the strengthening of the rupee against the dollar, Nilekani said, Infosys has sought relaxation from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) for more forward cover to hedge against rupee appreciation, as the Indian rupee has risen against the dollar.

Stating that software companies were the most hit by rupee appreciation and all firms have been trying to offset the effect of shooting rupee.The company has also converted the dollar guidance into rupee terms factored at 43.4 per cent, even as it had hedged $203 million. Infosys expects a total growth of over 30-31 per cent in the coming year. Even this outlook is prepared after considering the rupee appreciation trends.

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Infosys looks beyond the billion