Bangalore: India’s third biggest software services company Wipro Ltd. on Monday appointed Hewlett Packard Co.’s former head of printer business Vyomesh Joshi to its board in what analysts and insiders see as an effort to overhaul the company’s board.
The appointment of Joshi on Wipro’s board hints at more changes to come in the company’s highest decision making body that has at least four independent directors who have served for over a decade: N. Vaghul, B.C. Prabhakar, Jagdish N. Sheth and Ashok S. Ganguly.
Joshi left HP earlier this year after a 31-year stint during which he headed the company’s lucrative printer business from 2002, after new chief executive Meg Whitman came on board.
“This could well be the beginning of a bigger overhaul with some independent directors expected to retire soon,” said a person familiar with Wipro’s future plans. He spoke on the condition of anonymity because he is not authorised to speak with media on the subject.
“He brings in a unique combination of wisdom and technical capabilities. I am sure that Wipro will benefit from his insights and experience,” said Wipro’s billionaire chairman Azim Premji in a statement.
As reported by Mint earlier this month, in 31 big Indian companies, 88 independent directors have served their boards for more than 10 years, according to a survey by Stakeholders Empowerment Services (SES), a proxy advisory firm.
A provision in the draft companies law seeks to enforce a cap of 10 years on the tenure of an independent director and limit the number of such directorships to 20. Only 10 of these can be in listed companies.