Thursday, 6 November 2008

Meet the outsourcing billionaires

World may love it or hate it, but India remains the undisputed leader of outsourcing. According to a recent survey by Forbes magazine, five of the seven billionaires whose primary source of wealth is outsourcing are Indians. The other two, also Asians, hail from Taiwan.

By definition, outsourcing is to purchase or subcontract from an outside source; while offshoring can be done both within and outside a company.

"The economics behind offshoring are really compelling, and customers usually do it for three reasons - they want specialized firms, want to cut costs and gain access to talent or specialised skills," the magazine quoted Robert Kennedy, a professor at the University of Michigan Business School, as saying.

While the Taiwanese billionaires -- Terry Gou and Barry Lam -- lead companies specialising in contract manufacturing, the five Desis in the list have made their billions through software services.

Azim Premji
Azim Hasham Premji is the richest outsourcing billionaires with a net worth of $12.7 billion. Premiji heads Wipro, a provider of integrated business, technology and process solutions. The software services outsourcing company acquired a business process outsourcing arm in 2002.

A graduate in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University, US, Premji took on the mantle at Wipro at the age of 21, after the sudden demise of his father in 1966.

Under his leadership, the fledgling $2 million-hydrogenated cooking fat company has today grown into a $5 billion IT services giant with customers across the globe.

He has been among the Financial Times list of top 25 billionaires who have done most to bring about significant and lasting social, political or cultural changes. Time listed him amongst the 100 most influential people in the world in April 2004. In 2003, Fortune named him among the 25 most powerful business leaders outside the US.

The Indian Institute of Technology, Roorkee and the Manipal Academy of Higher Education have both conferred honorary doctorates on him. Premji is also a member of the Prime Minister’s Committee for Trade and Industry. In January 2005, the Government conferred upon him Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian award.

Terry Gou
Second richest billionaire is Taiwanese tycoon, Terry Gou, with a net worth of $6.1 billion. Gou heads Hon Hai, the company is the world's largest electronics contract manufacturer with most of its huge factories in China.

Hidden behind a veil of anonymity, and with rapidly growing earnings, it makes laptops for Dell, Playstations for Sony, handsets for Nokia, iPods for Apple and numerous other everyday electronics.

Operating under the trade name Foxconn Electronics, Hon Hai manufactures connectors and cable assemblies and enclosures for desktops and notebook PCs, and PC peripherals. However, the company is still best known for manufacturing iPods.

The company, which employs 130,000 workers in China, announced its plans to move its Asia-Pacific headquarters to Beijing from the southern city of Shenzhen.

In June 2007, the company acquired Premier Image Technology Corp, Taiwan's leading producer of digital still cameras.

In 1988 Terry opened his first factory in mainland China, in Shenzhen, where his largest factory is situated. He owns 30 per cent of the Public company and was ranked 142nd on Forbes magazine's 2007 list of the world's richest people, with a net worth of $5.5 billion.

Shiv Nadar
Co-founder of HCL Technologies, an outsourcing electronics, computing and IT software company, Shiv Nadar's net worth is $3.9 billion.

HCL is one of India's leading global IT services companies with clients including Cisco, Boeing and IBM.

When Shiv Nadar set up Hindustan Computers Limited (HCL) more than 30 years ago in a one-room tenement, it shocked most friends and associates, because Nadar, then 30, had quit a high-paying executive job with Delhi Cloth Mills to dabble in IT, a concept that had few takers in the country then.

Shiv Nadar led a young team which passionately believed in and bet on the growth of the IT industry. And it's courtesy this vision that we have the country's sixth most powerful tech CEO.

Head of the $4.4 billion global enterprise HCL, Nadar is known for his daring forays based on his conviction of the future. At a time when hardware was the name of the game, Nadar foresaw the huge potential in IT education and NIIT was born.

In 1998, Nadar started US operations, which was the beginning of the group's international foray. Today, HCL has presence in over 18 countries. HCL today employs more than 51,000 professionals, has a global presence in 18 countries spanning locations in the US, Europe and Japan.

In 1987 ELCINA the body representing the electronic industry in India nominated Nadar as the Man of the Year.

Narayana Murthy
Narayana Murthy, with a net worth of $1.4 billion, is chief mentor and non-executive chairman of Infosys. A global leader in IT and consulting, Infosys pioneered the global delivery model of outsourcing, whose premise is to take work to the location where the best talent is available.

Murthy founded Infosys in 1981 along with six other software professionals and served as the CEO for 21 years before handing over the reins to co-founder Nandan M Nilekani in March 2002.

Under his leadership, Infosys was listed on NASDAQ in 1999. He served as the Executive Chairman of the Board and Chief Mentor from 2002 to 2006.

Murthy is the recipient of numerous awards and honours. The Economist ranked him 8th on its list of 15 most admired global leaders in 2005. He was ranked 28th among the world's most respected business leaders by The Financial Times in 2005.

Murthy holds a BE (Electrical) from the University of Mysore (1967) and MTech (Electrical) from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (1969). He has been conferred with honorary doctorate degrees by leading universities across the world.

Barry Lamb
Barry Lamb with the net worth of $1.3 billion is the Chairman and CEO of Quanta Computer, the largest notebook original design manufacturer that boasts clients like Apple, Hewlett-Packard and Dell. In 2004, the company produced 2 million laptops a month, or one per second.

Born in Shanghai and raised in Hong Kong, Lamb received his bachelor's and master's degrees in electrical engineering from National Taiwan University.

Lamb has been twice named by Business Week as one of 50 "Stars of Asia" and in 2002 was part of the magazine's Top 25 Managers list.

An art lover, Lamb is the director of Cloud Gate Theatre Group and chair of Quanta Education Foundation, which promotes culture and art.

Nandan Nilekani
Another Infoscian on the list is Nandan M Nilekani with a net worth of $1.1 billion. Co-founder of Infosys, Nilekani ran the company as chief executive and managing director till June 2007, when he became co-chairman.

Nilekani took over as Chief executive officer and managing director of Infosys Technologies in 2002 from Narayan Murthy. One of the founding members of Infosys, he has been a director on the company's board since its inception in 1981.

In January 2006, Nilekani became one of the youngest entrepreneurs to join 20 global leaders on the prestigious World Economic Forum (WEF) Foundation Board. He is listed as one of the 100 most influential people in the world by Time Magazine, 2006.

He, along with Infosys Narayana Murthy, received Fortune magazine's `Asia's Businessmen of the Year 2003’ award.

He was also named among the `World's most respected business leaders' in 2002 and 2003, in a global survey by Financial Times and PricewaterhouseCoopers. In 2006, Nilekani was conferred with Padma Bhushan, one of the highest civilian award in India.

Nilekani received his bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay, India in 1978.

Senapathy Gopalakrishnan
Last billionaire on the list is another Infosys cofounder, Senapathy Gopalakrishnan. With a net worth of $1 billion, Kris took over from Nandan Nilekani as chief executive and managing director June last year.

He has previously served as chief operating officer (till April 2002), and as the president and joint managing director (till August 2006).

Between 1987 and 1994 he headed the technical operations of KSA/Infosys (a joint venture between Infosys and KSA at Atlanta, USA) as Vice President (Technical). In 1994, he returned to India and was appointed Deputy Managing Director of the company.

An IITtian, Gopalakrishnan began his career with Patni Computer Systems (PCS), Mumbai as a software engineer in 1979 and become an assistant project manager in 1981.

Chairman of Indian Institute of Information Technology and Management (IIITM), Kerala, he also serves as Vice Chairman of the Information Technology Education Standards Board (BITES) set up by the Government of Karnataka.

He currently chairs the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) Apex Council on Services.


BPO said...

Very good information, thanks for posting