OK BYE

The CFO who led Infosys during its toughest period is moving on

Quartz india
Quartz india

Three years ago, when Infosys was going through one of its toughest periods in recent years—with falling revenue and a slew of top-level exits—it appointed Rajiv Bansal as its chief financial officer (CFO).

Today (Oct. 12), as India’s second-largest IT services company posted a second consecutive quarter of strong earnings—which may be an indicator that the company is out of the woods—Bansal has decided to resign.

The resignation is effective from today, but 42-year-old Bansal will continue to be an advisor to the CEO and on the company’s board till Dec. 31, 2015.

“He’s a brilliant CFO,” CEO Vishal Sikka said in a press conference, describing the graduate from St Xaviers’ College, Kolkata, who was his co-pilot in navigating Infosys’ turnaround. “As Infosys’ CFO, Rajiv has led our financial strategy and has been instrumental in bringing us to this point in our transformational journey.”

To questions about whether the exit will have any adverse impact on Infosys’ business, Sikka said, “I am not concerned about any impact on business because of management change. The company is stronger and larger than any of us.”

Bansal has not yet disclosed what he plans to do next. “Being a CFO at 40 was a dream come true for me, but there are many exciting opportunities outside Infosys. I want to be somewhere where I can create more value,” he told television channels after the announcement of his exit today.

Bansal’s predecessors—V. Balakrishnan and T.V. Mohandas Pai—are both currently active investors in India’s thriving technology startup ecosystem. But Bansal may not follow their steps. “I wish I could do that (become an investor). I don’t have the kind of money that Bala (Balakrishnan) has so I cannot do that,” he explained.

Nonetheless, Bansal was the second highest-paid executive at the company, with an annual package of $770,858 (Rs4.99 crore) last financial year.

Bansal joined Infosys in 1999, rising to become a vice president and the head of finance at the company before being appointed as CFO. In the press release to announce his CFO appointment in Nov. 2012, Infosys had called him “a very bright star in the finance department.”

Prior to Infosys, Bansal worked at Tata Technologies, British telecommunications company Cable & Wireless, and Zurich-headquartered ABB.

New CFO

Ranganath D. Mavinakere, currently an executive vice president who looks after the operations of the CEO’s office, will replace Bansal as CFO.

“Ranga (Mavinakere) is an old hand and has managed several key positions at Infosys,” Sikka said. “I am confident he will be able to support the organisation in his new role.”

An Infosys veteran of 15 years, Mavinakere was so far responsible for strategic planning, risk management, mergers and acquisitions and corporate marketing.

He is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad, and the Indian Institute of Technology, Madras.

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