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Trump administration will be business friendly, says Vishal Sikka amid rising concerns over H1B visas

Global software major Infosys Ltd on Friday reported a net profit of Rs 3,708 crore for the third quarter (October-December) of fiscal 2016-17, registering a 7 per cent year-on-year (YoY) growth.
India TV Business Desk Bengaluru January 13, 2017 14:50 IST
India TV Business Desk

With just a week left for President-elect Trump to assume charge, Infosys CEO Vishal Sikka today said that he is yet to see any discernible pattern of clients over H1B visa policy and expressed hope that the new administration will be business friendly.

"In terms of the new administration, the new President is going to take office next week. President-elect Trump himself is an entrepreneur and has a very business-friendly, innovation-oriented background. So, I expect that the policies of the administration are going to be friendly towards business, innovation and entrepreneurship," he said.

He added that if companies continue to focus on delivering value and innovation, "things will be okay".

There are concerns that the new government in the US, under Donald Trump,, is likely to push for a stricter visa regime to curb "abuse" of H1-B and L1 visas used by foreign workers.

The move is likely to significantly impact Indian IT firms, which get about 60 per cent of their revenues from the US.
"Of course, visa policies and immigration related policies may change and we have to watch and see what happens there," he said.

Sikka said there would be some impact of the H1-B depending on the nature of the policy that is enacted but added that "it is not something he is overly concerned about".

Noting that some clients did reach out to Infosys, Sikka said: "So far, there is no discernible pattern in client behaviour."

"Many clients have reached out, because everybody is trying to figure out what this means but I wouldn't say there is any noticeable discernible pattern. So as we see the policies take effect, we will let you know. We are waiting and watching," Sikka said.

Sikka said the company has been increasing the number of local hires in its international markets, including the US.

"We have quite a bit of H1-Bs and we also have a lot of local hires... we had articulated that we have to become much more local and locally-oriented in our strategy in the market and globally...So ultimately, regardless of the visa policies or so forth, the right thing to do for innovation is to have a lot of rich local talent," he said.

Infosys Ltd on Friday reported a net profit of Rs 3,708 crore for the third quarter (October-December) of fiscal 2016-17, registering a 7 per cent year-on-year (YoY) growth.

Infosys, the country's second-largest software firm, also revised its current fiscal constant currency revenue guidance to 8.4-8.8 per cent against 8-9 per cent estimated earlier. 

"Taking into account seasonal and other additional headwinds for the quarter, our Q3 revenue performance was broadly in line with our expectations," Infosys CEO and MD Vishal Sikka said.

The Bengaluru-headquartered firm's net profit stood at Rs 3,465 crore in the corresponding three months a year ago. 

Its consolidated revenues in the third quarter rose 8.6 per cent to Rs 17,273 crore from Rs 15,902 crore in the year-ago period, the company said. 

Reacting to the results, the IT major’s shares fell 0.61 per cent in early trade to Rs 993.95 a piece on BSE.

Infosys COO UB Pravin Rao said that the company's utilisation has remained healthy in a seasonally soft quarter.

"Our continued efforts to improve employee engagement and experience resulted in a reduction in attrition. During the quarter, we added 77 clients and also added 2 clients in the USD 75mn-plus revenue category," he added.

Ravikumar appointed new Deputy COO

Infosys has also appointed Ravikumar S as the Deputy Chief Operating Officer (COO), who will report to Rao with immediate effect.

In addition to his current responsibility of heading the global delivery organisation, Ravikumar will oversee certain strategic business enabling functions and will be based in India, the company said.

In dollar terms, Infosys posted a 4.4 per cent jump in net profit to USD 547 million, while revenue was up 6 per cent to USD 2.5 billion in the third quarter. During the quarter, the company paid interim dividend including tax of Rs 3,029 crore.

Infosys' total headcount at the end of December quarter stood at over 1.99 lakh, down marginally from the September quarter.


Its liquid assets including cash and cash equivalents, available-for-sale financial assets and government bonds were at Rs 35,697 crore as on December 31, 2016 as compared to Rs 35,640 crore as on September 30, 2016.

With PTI Inputs