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BW Businessworld

The Unanimous Choice

Two years after guiding the company through an unprecedented email hack, Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton is leaving the company to devote his time to Snap Inc

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Natarajan Chandrasekaran is the man of the moment! The CEO of India’s largest software exporter Tata Consultancy Services has been anointed chairman of Tata Sons, the holding company of the $103-billion Tata Group. The 53-year-old Chandrasekaran, appointed by the unanimous decision of the Tata Sons’ board after a search panel recommended him, will take charge on 21 February. He has also been appointed as the chairman of Tata Motors. And it is likely that other Tata group companies will soon follow suit.

A First!
iPhone maker Apple has cut its CEO Tim Cook’s salary by a whopping 15 per cent for 2016 as annual sales declined for the year, missing targets that also led to the tech giant’s first annual revenue decline in 15 years. The company gave the 56-year-old $8.75 million in total compensation last year, down from the $10.28 million in 2015, according to a Securities and Exchange filing. His cash bonus fell to $5.4 million in 2016, from $8 million in 2015, declining for the first time since he assumed leadership of the company in 2011.

Redirecting Focus

Two years after guiding the company through an unprecedented email hack, Sony Entertainment CEO Michael Lynton is leaving the company to devote his time to Snap Inc. ahead of its public stock offering planned for later this year. Lynton, who along with his wife was one of the earliest investors in Snap, has been on the board of the technology firm best known for its messaging app Snapchat since 2013 and was quietly named its chairman late last year

Tiger Rules The Roost

In a major top deck reshuffle at Flipkart — influenced by its largest investor Tiger Global — former Tiger Global management executive KALYAN KRISHNAMURTHY has been promoted as the new CEO to run the operations of India’s largest online retailer. He is replacing co-founder Binny Bansal, who has been elevated to the position of Group CEO. Kishnamurthy will be responsible for Flipkart’s profit and losses, marking a first for the Indian startup sector where co-founders of the country’s most valued Internet company have handed over the reins to a professional.

A Temporary Arrangement
Public broadcaster Prasar Bharati that runs Doordarshan and All India Radio has named RAJEEV SINGH, member (finance), as interim CEO. Singh will replace Suresh Chandra Panda who has been serving as interim CEO since November 2016, after full time chief Jawhar Sircar put in his papers in October. Panda is, however, scheduled to retire on 4 February.

One More Bites The Dust
Twitter Inc.’s China chief KATHY CHEN has quit after only eight months, the latest executive to leave amid a global reorganisation. A stream of executives have left the company since it announced layoffs in October amid continued losses. Chen announced her departure but said Twitter would keep open its Hong Kong office. Twitter has been blocked in China since 2009, but Chen was hired to get more Chinese advertising clients.

Putting Money Where Food Is
Billionaire Azim Premji’s Premji Invest, the investment arm of Wipro, has infused $25 million (Rs 170 crore) into Bengaluru-based food company ID Fresh Foods that has popularised ready-to-cook products, including idly and dosa batter, chapatis and Malabar parotas. Premji Invest has acquired a 25 per cent stake in the company, valuing it at over $100 million. Two years ago, venture capital firm Helion Ventures had picked up a similar stake in the company for Rs 35 crore.

Knight Folds
Akshay Naheta, founder of London-based investment fund Knight Assets & Co. LLP, has joined SoftBank Group Corp. to help manage its new $100-billion technology vehicle. He will help guide SoftBank’s public equity investments and potential acquisitions, while Knight, which was in the process of launching a new $500 million fund, will be slowly wound down.