India’s second-biggest software services company Infosys is setting its sights on the Southeast Asian market, inking a joint venture last week with Temasek, the Singapore backed investment firm, to expand in the region. Under the joint venture, Infosys and Temasek will combine employees to jointly provide information technology services to Temasek and other customers in the region. The new venture is expected to have more than 200 employees and will be headquartered in Singapore.
The deal is a big win for the company that started out in July of 1981 with just $250 and has become an important player in the software services market in India and around the globe. It has grown over the years into an $11 billion company with a market capitalization of around $45.5 billion. The deal with Temasek is expected to help Infosys boost the skills of its workforce and to expand into a big market rife with opportunity.
Partnerships, Alliances At Its Core
This isn’t the first partnership Infosys has inked as it aims to become the number one IT services player in India. It has long embraced a strategy of partnering up with technology providers, inking strategic alliances and making outright buys. Some of the more high profile deals in the past several quarters include expanded partnerships with Adobe, Microsoft, Amazon, and Salesforce.com.
Infosys was co-founded by Narayan Murthy, Nandan Nilekani, N. S. Raghavan, S. Gopalakrishnan, S. D. Shibulal, K. Dinesh and Ashok Arora all former employees of Patni Computer Systems. The company started out focusing on the Indian market but over the past 35 years has grown into a worldwide business offering its services around the globe including in the U.S. In the U.S. alone it has roughly 1,200 employees, providing software services for the insurance, manufacturing, banking and other industries. While Infosys is India based its first client, Data Basics Corporation hailed out of New York.
While a powerhouse in its own right, what Infosys Technologies has long been credited with is changing the way the world views India. Thanks in part to the growth of the software services company, India is now known for entrepreneurs and skilled software engineers. Infosys, after all, was the first Indian firm to list on the Nasdaq and was the first Indian operation to offer stock options to employees.
CEO Dust Ups
That’s not to say the company hasn’t been void of controversy. Last summer Vishal Sikka, the former SAP executive, resigned as Chief Executive shortly after completing three years at the helm amid infighting between the board and the founding shareholders of the company. A whispering campaign, reportedly with the blessings of the founding shareholders about governance under Sikka raised the tensions to an untenable level and prompted the resignation. It's also resulted in an exodus of executives Sikka had brought on to push his innovation strategy. In January Infosys named Salil S. Parekh as the new CEO. Parekh, the second outsider to take on the CEO role, came from Capgemini where he was most recently deputy CEO and was a member of the Group Executive Board. Under his charge, four executives have departed prompting the CEO to vow to hire outside the company. Despite all the drama the stock has been able to hold up so far this year. Shares are up about 25% since the start of 2018.