With Rishad Premji all set to become the chairman of Wipro Ltd on 31 July, his current role is being among three executives. CEO and Executive Director Abidali Z. Neemuchwala who will also be re-designated as CEO and Managing Director will oversee mergers and acquisitions while CFO Jatin Dalal will handle Wipro Ventures, the company’s $100 Mn corporate venture arm. Meanwhile, government relations will be handled by Wipro’s general counsel, Deepak Acharya.
The development follows as earlier this month, billionaire and philanthropist Azim Premji decided to step down from his current role at the company he led for more than fifty years to devote more time to his charity work.
While Azim Premji will continue as a non-executive director and founder chairman, Rishad will be the new executive chairman. So far, Rishad has been responsible for overseeing corporate strategy, which includes M&A, Wipro Ventures, and relations with investors and the government.
A spokesperson for Wipro confirmed the changes stating, “Subsequent to the appointment of Rishad Premji as Executive Chairman, effective 31 July 2019 subject to shareholder approval, his current roles and responsibilities will be aligned.”
Rishad had set up Wipro Ventures in 2015 and, under his leadership, Wipro Ventures has deployed $65 Mn in 18 startups., along with helped its parent in more than 100 deals, underscoring the early. It is jointly managed by Venu Pemmaraju, formerly a senior investment manager at Intel Capital, and Wipro executive Biplab Adhya.
Both Pemmaraju and Adhya, based out of California, will now report to CFO Dalal.
A Harvard Business School alumnus, Rishad first worked with GE Capital for four years and then with Bain and Co. in London for two years before returning to India to work with Wipro in 2007. Over the last 13 years, Rishad has worked across multiple departments in the company before being inducted to the board in 2015. His appointment comes at a time as Wipro is aiming for higher growth given the fact that it has not reported double-digit growth in revenue in the last seven years.
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