Terming media stories on Panaya acquisition false and malicious, Infosys Chief Executive Vishal Sikka told its employees that the attacks were orchestrated by people hell-bent on harming their reputation.
“Once again, some newspapers have carried false and malicious stories about our company — this time it is about the acquisition of Panaya. These speculations and fabrications are designed to tarnish our reputation,” said Sikka in an email to his employees (techies) coding software at the company’s development centres worldwide.
Accusing the media of targeting the company, its employees and himself to the point of harassment, Sikka said the reports created a false alternate reality out of events and dates, with embellishments calculated to misled and sensationalise.
“We have denied the allegations in these stories, but they still get published. As we’ve said before, we take every whistle-blower’s complaint very seriously and there is a due process to investigate any complaint that comes to us,” reiterated Sikka.
The IT major’s first non-founder CEO’s mail came a day after an anonymous whistle-blower alleged that its executives had personal interests in buying the US-based Panaya firm for $200-million in February 2015.
The whistle-blower is reported to have mailed the letter to the Indian market regulator Securities Exchange of India (Sebi) in Mumbai.
The city-based outsourcing firm acquired the automation technology firm to offer large-scale enterprise software management as a service to its global clients.
Asserting that he would not allow the charges go unchallenged, Sikka said he would pursue every avenue to defend the company in the face of what he called unfair and unwarranted attacks.
“Though these distractions are expensive, draining and time-consuming, it is our burden to ensure that the company’s business continues unflinchingly. As I have written previously, we have far bigger battles ahead of us,” Sikka said.
Advising his employees to prepare for the new year (fiscal 2017-18), the CEO said the year ahead promised to be full of relentless disruption and wondrous opportunities and a year that would separate the ‘has beens’ from the ‘to-bes’ in the industry.
“I am, as always, counting on your faith and unwavering attention to what really matters. Change is never easy, and change at the scale we are undertaking may be unprecedented. It is this change that has so inflamed some into trying to drag us all into the mud. And yet, change we must. There is no other way,” Sikka added.
Observing that in the time of AI (Artificial Intelligence) and digitising world, success would depend on their ability to automate, innovate and educate, Sikka said that failure, if any, would be of a company, an industry and a dream that cannot be let to happen.
“Last week, when I shared the results of our journey with many investors and financial analysts in Mumbai and elsewhere, it was clear that majority of them and our clients, are with us 100 per cent. They understand the path we are on and its significance and are supportive,” he said.
Stating that he was counting on all the employees to rise above the distractions, Sikka told them to focus on what matters and deliver.
“As I was flying home, I visited a very old Buddhist temple en route. It was a fleeting peaceful moment in an unnecessarily difficult week. But the row of Buddhas there, in a moment of clarity, indicated to me that with compassion and unflinching resolve, we will get there. We must, and we will,” added Sikka.