India's Wipro founder Azim Premji to step down READ MORE

Marco Green
June 11, 2019

Rishad Premji, 41, is the eldest son of 73-year-old billionaire Azim Premji, who built a tiny business in to a successful firm in a span of 53 years as its Chairman and Managing Director since his return from the U.S. in 1966. Azim Premji will continue as a non-executive director and founder chairman of Wipro.

I am also pleased to announce that Abidali Neemuchwala will be the Managing Director of Wipro Limited from July 31, 2019, while continuing to be the Chief Executive Officer.

He also serves as non-executive chairman of Wipro Enterprises (P) Limited and as a director of Wipro GE Healthcare Private Limited and in other entities of the promoter group, the company added.

Azim Premji will continue to be on the board as a non-executive director for another five years from July 31. After the announcement, Wipro Chairman Azim Premji wrote an email to all his employees informing them about the changes and wishing them luck for the future.

The appointments are subject to shareholders' approval, Wipro added in the release.

Neemuchwala has no relationship with any of the board directors and is not related to Premjis.

Azim Premji is credited with founding a small hydrogenated cooking fat company and transforming it into a $8.5 billion global IT powerhouse, which also has a presence in FMCG, Infrastructure Engineering and Medical Devices leader, with revenues of approximately $2 billion.

The market reaction to Azim Premji's exit could be seen as underlining confident in his judgment as a professional in choosing his successor.

On Rishad taking over the company's reins, Ganguly said his (Rishad's) understanding of the IT industry, strategic orientation and diverse leadership experience make him the right person to guide Wipro. "His unflinching commitment to values makes him an exemplar of how business and ethics, can and must go together".

A recipient of Padma Bhushan and Padma Vibhushan awards, Mr. Azim Premji now plans to devote more time for philanthropic activities.

Noting that his father demonstrated that a successful business could be built ethically and be driven by social goal, Rishad Premji called upon the techies to chart new paths and win new frontiers while consolidating the company and upholding its rich values. "He will also invest his time and energy for the philanthropic causes of the Azim Premji Foundation but will always be available for counsel", said Rishad Premji in the e-mail, accessed by IANS. "I have great confidence and trust in Rishad's leadership to steer Wipro in its next phase of growth as we move forward", he said in a statement.

In the early 2000s, Wipro had emerged as a firm with more than a $1 billion revenue and was one of the early companies in India to offer IT outsourcing.

"This is a testament to the spirit and dedication of thousands of Wiproites".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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