BENGALURU: In a much-awaited move, Wipro Ltd on Friday appointed Thierry Delaporte as chief executive (CEO) and managing director of the company.
Industry experts believe Delaporte's appointment as CEO and MD in Wipro is a historic move as he perhaps is the first non-Indian to be at the helm of any large Indian IT services company.
"This is refreshing news," said Arup Roy, research vice president, Gartner. Delaporte's appointment will help Wipro in "gene jumping" which will strengthen the company with new ideas and practices, he added.
"His appointment is a huge testimony to Wipro’s openness to accept outside talent. It also reflects upon the IT services industry as a whole," said Sanchit Vir Gogia, chief executive and chief analyst, Greyhound Research.
Before his appointment in Wipro, Delaporte was the chief operating officer of Capgemini Group and a member of its group executive board. During his twenty-five year career with Capgemini, he held several leadership roles including that of CEO of the Global Financial Services Strategic Business Unit, and head of all global service lines. He also oversaw Capgemini’s India operations, and led the group’s transformation agenda, conceptualising and driving several strategic programs across various business units.
"Capgemini as an organisation has expertise in newer practices and therefore Delaporte’s experience could help Wipro in its next phase of growth. Also the fact that he is from Europe could help Wipro build its global presence as the next wave of growth is coming from the European markets driven by GDPR, Brexit, etc," Gogia said.
Analysts believe Delaporte will be expected to deliver on tasks his predecessor Abidali Z. Neemuchwala left incomplete. Neemuchwala failed to deliver on his ambitious target of turning Wipro into a $15 billion company, with operating margins of 23% by 2020.
"Delaporte could be also pivotal in helping Wipro in its M&A (mergers & acquisitions) strategy and also in newer areas of AI (artificial intelligence) and IoT (internet of things) which have been relatively slower for the company," Gogia added.
Wipro chairman Rishad Premji believes Delaporte is "the right person to lead Wipro in its next phase of growth. He has an exceptional leadership track record, strong international exposure, deep strategic expertise, a unique ability to forge long-standing client relationships, and proven experience of driving transformation and managing technological disruption."
Delaporte has a Bachelor’s degree in Economics and Finance from Sciences Po Paris and a Masters in Law from Sorbonne University. He is also the cofounder and president of the not-for-profit organisation Life Project 4 Youth.