Wipro Ltd Chief Executive Officer Abidali Z Neemuchwala is leaving after a turbulent four years during which growth stalled and the Indian IT services giant fell farther behind rivals Infosys and Tata Consultancy Services (TCS).
Mr Neemuchwala will remain at his post until a new CEO is appointed, the company said in a statement. His departure means an even more active role — at least temporarily — for Rishad Premji, Wipro’s hands-on, customer-facing executive chairman and son of outsourcing industry pioneer Azim Premji. It’s the culmination of growing dissatisfaction with Wipro’s inability to close the gap with Infosys and TCS, according to people familiar with the matter, who asked not to be named discussing a sensitive matter.
While the industry veteran presided over a 13% rise in Wipro’s stock over his tenure as of Thursday’s close, that lagged Infosys Ltd.’s 33% and Tata Consultancy Services Ltd.’s 78% rally over the same period.
“A new leadership is required to push digital acceleration, improved execution, automation and stronger large deals for Wipro going ahead,” said Thomas George, president of CyberMedia Research & Service Ltd, citing the company’s single-digit growth.
Wipro, whose clients include Levi Strauss & Co. and Pitney Bowes, slid as much as 2.3% Friday. The company said in its statement that Mr Neemuchwala was leaving for personal reasons, while the CEO was not immediately available for comment.