Saturday, May 26th, 2018

Founders of Infosys and Board questioning the governance.

Published on February 11, 2017 by   ·   No Comments

New Delhi: The rift between founders of Infosys and its board spilled out in the open on Friday with co-founder Narayana Murthy questioning executive compensation and corporate governance at India’s second biggest software services exporter led by Vishal Sikka.

“Let me make it very very clear that it is not the management that concerns me. I think we are quite happy with (CEO) Vishal Sikka. He is doing a good job. However, what concerns some of us particularly the founders, and seniors, former Infoscions is that there have been certain acts of governance that could have been better,” Murthy said. Murthy, along with other co-founders Nandan Nilekani and S Gopalakrishnan are believed to have written to Infosys board asking why Sikka’s compensation was raised and hefty severance packages offered to two top-level executives who quit the company.

Sikka was paid Rs 48.7 crore in base salary, bonus and benefits last year as compared to base salary of Rs 4.5 crore for a partial period in 2015. Murthy has questioned “paying the former CFO (Rajiv Bansal) a 30-month severance pay which amounted to Rs 23 crore.”

“The Chairman said at the AGM that he had some highly confidential, competitive information but anybody who knows our industry can quickly come to the conclusion that there are so many people in the company, senior people that have such competitive information.

Asked about market speculations that Bansal was paid off because he had damaging information on Infosys, Murthy said: “I hope it is not the case.” Former executives Mohandas Pai, Ashok Vemuri, V Balakrishnan and B G Srinivas were never paid any severance pay, he added. Infosys, however, has denied any governance lapses.

“The board is fully aligned with the strategic direction of Dr Vishal Sikka and is very appreciative of the initiatives taken by him in pursuance of this transformation,” Infosys Chairman R Seshasayee said in a statement.

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