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New Infosys CEO to get annual pay of $5.08 mn

Infosys Ltd will pay its new chief executive officer Vishal Sikka up to $5.08 million in annual salary besides a stock option of $2 million, a package considered lower than global peers. Sikka, 47, will replace SD Shibulal and take charge on 1 August. India's second-largest software services exporter sent out a circular calling for an extraordinary general meeting (EGM) of company shareholders on 30 July at Bangalore to approve appointment of Sikka as the new Chief Executive Officer (CEO).

According to the circular, Sikka will be paid an annual base salary of $9,00,000 and annual variable pay of $4.18 million. The former SAP executive will also be eligible to receive an annual stock option equal to $2 million in value.  Sikka's total compensation package of $7.08 million, including stock options, compares to $18 million Microsoft pays to its chief executive, $16.2 million IBM CEO gets and $14.4 million Citibank CEO receives.

Hit by several top-level exits, Infosys last month undertook a major shake-up bringing in for the first time an outsider, Vishal Sikka, as CEO even as mentor N R Narayana Murthy and his son Rohan stepped down four years ahead of their tenure. Along with Murthy, who upon return from retirement in June last year wanted five years as chairman to turn around the sagging fortunes of Infosys, Executive Vice Chairman S Gopalakrishnan will also step down on 14 June.

Since his return, Infosys had seen 11 top-level exits including that of CFO V Balakrishnan, global manufacturing head Ashok Vemuri and President BG Srinivas. Murthy will be replaced by veteran banker K V Kamath as non-executive Chairman of the Infosys board. Infosys, in the circular, said Sikka will be appointed for a five year period ending 13 June, 2019. Murthy will be designated chairman emeritus from 11 October, the day Kamath will assume the role of non-executive chairman.

Sikka, who quit SAP in May, comes in after four straight years of narrowing margins at Infosys. A Stanford University computer science Ph.D. graduate, Sikka oversaw the development of new products, including a platform for quickly analysing large databases, as chief technology officer at SAP, the world's largest maker of business-management software.
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