Vishal Sikka, CEO & MD of Infosys
Image by Infosys
1 June 1967 |
|Alma mater||Stanford University (Ph.D.)
Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda
|Salary||$5.08 million |
|Title||CEO & MD |
Vishal Sikka is the CEO and MD of Infosys. Prior to joining Infosys, Dr. Vishal Sikka was a member of the Executive Board of SAP AG and the Global Managing Board, leading all SAP products and innovation globally. In his 12 years at SAP, Dr. Sikka led SAP’s portfolio including the breakthrough in-memory platform, SAP HANA, all their applications, cloud and technology solutions. He is credited with accelerating SAP’s development processes, transforming its innovation culture and leading several successful product co-creation initiatives with clients. He is also the creator of the concept of ‘timeless software’, which represents the renewal of products without disruption to customer environments. Sikka left the SAP board in May 2014 for "personal reasons", and was announced as CEO and MD of Infosys on 12 June 2014.
Early life and career
Sikka was born in Shajapur Madhya Pradesh to Punjabi parents, the son of an officer in the Indian Railways and a teacher. His family moved to Vadodara (formerly Baroda) in Gujarat, India when he was six and he graduated from Rosary High School. Vishal Sikka joined the bachelors in computer engineering course at Maharaja Sayajirao University of Baroda, which he discontinued to go to Syracuse University in New York where he earned a B.S. in computer science. Sikka was accepted to the doctoral program at Stanford University. His dissertation was titled Integrating Specialized Procedures into Proof Systems and his thesis advisor was Michael Genesereth. He graduated with his Ph.D. in 1996.
After a brief stint at Xerox's research labs, Sikka founded iBrain which competed at the time with Business Objects. iBrain was acquired by PatternRX, Inc. His second startup, Bodha.com, focused on developing technology for non-invasive, service-based integration of enterprise applications and information. Sikka joined Peregrine Systems as their area Vice-President for Platform Technologies, responsible for application development and integration technologies and architecture, following their acquisition of Bodha.com.
Sikka joined SAP in 2002 to head up the advanced technology group responsible for strategic innovative projects. Later he was promoted to Senior Vice President of Architecture and Chief Software Architect, responsible for the road map and the direction for the architecture of SAP's products and infrastructure.
In April 2007, Sikka was named SAP's first-ever CTO reporting to then CEO Henning Kagermann. At the time, SAP spokesman Frank Hartmann stated that SAP felt it needed a CTO to oversee some broad changes that were under way at the company, including its renewed focus on the mid-market, the introduction of new on-demand products, and the continued roll out of NetWeaver and its SOA strategy.
On 4 May 2014 Dr. Vishal Sikka, Executive Board Member for Products and Innovation, announced his departure from the Executive Board for personal reasons, effective immediately 
On 12 June 2014 Infosys Ltd, India's second-largest IT services exporter, named Dr Sikka as its Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director. Sikka took over from S.D. Shibulal, one of the founders, on 1 August. He was inducted as a whole-time director of the Board and CEO & MD (Designate) of Infosys on 14 June.  He receives $5.08 Million (30 Crores) and stock options worth $2 million as annual compensation.
In 2008, Sikka joined the executive board of the CTO Forum, an influential industry non-profit community. The same year, he articulated his vision of 'Timeless Software' – software that does not cause disruption to the user as technology landscapes evolve – and proposed that this be a key pillar of SAP's future development efforts. He has expressed his admiration for industry visionary Alan Kay and contributed a chapter to Points of View, a tribute on Kay's 70th birthday. Sikka served as a member of the advisory board for Coghead from 2006 to 2009 along with industry influencers Steve Bourne, Guy Kawasaki and John Seely Brown. Coghead was acquired by SAP in 2009.
Sikka has been an influential advocate for HANA, SAP's new In-memory database technology. He spearheaded the development of HANA since his appointment as CTO with support from Hasso Plattner. Since assuming his seat on the executive board, he has spoken on multiple occasions about the potential of HANA as a breakthrough in the enterprise software space.
- Genesereth, Michael. "Ph.D. Graduates, Stanford University, Dept. of Computer Science". Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- "SAP Announces Leadership Appointments Project". SAP AG. Retrieved 4 May 2014.
- "Vishal Sikka to be CEO and MD of Infosys from August 1". news.biharprabha.com. Retrieved 12 June 2014.
- Nandakumar, Indu (13 June 2014). "Vishal Sikka: My wife calls me a fake Punjabi". Times of India.
- "Vishal Sikka: Mathematics Genealogy Project". American Mathematical Society. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- Mishra, Pankaj (2 December 2010). "Vishal Sikka: We’re running 20 start-ups at SAP". The Economic Times. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- "Information Integration for e-Commerce:". Stanford University Infolab. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- "Vishal Sikka CV" (PDF). Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- Wailgum, Thomas (18 June 2009). "SAP's first ever CTO prepares for battle". Computerworld UK. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- Khan, Shabana. "SAP Appoints Vishal Sikka as Chief Technology Officer; Establishes New Office of the CTO under Sikka’s Leadership". SAP Global Communications. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- Niccolai, James (30 May 2007). "SAP Names Vishal Sikka as Its First CTO". CIO Magazine. Retrieved 10 January 2012.
- Wailgum, Thomas (17 May 2010). "SAP's "Third" CEO: Vishal Sikka". CIO Magazine. Retrieved 11 January 2012.
- "May 4, 2014 Press Release by SAP News". SAP News. 4 May 2014. Retrieved 4 May 2014.
- "Infosys to pay its CEO Vishal Sikka Rs. 30 Crores annually". IANS. news.biharprabha.com. Retrieved 3 July 2014.
- "SAP CTO Vishal Sikka Joins CTO Forum Executive Board". Reuters (Press Release). Retrieved 11 January 2012.
- Sikka, Vishal. "Timelessness". Blogger.com. Retrieved 11 January 2012.
- Harris, Mimi (3 October 2006). "Industry Luminaries Throw Their Weight Behind Coghead". Business Wire / Eastwick Communications. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Bjorlin, Courtney (21 September 2011). "Vishal Sikka Gets Real on SAP HANA Benefits and Barriers". ASUG News. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Mirchandani, Vinnie. "The next billion SAP users will be smart meters". dealarchitect.typepad.com. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Kanaracus, Chris (21 June 2011). "SAP's HANA in-memory analytics engine now available". PCWorld Australia. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Talbot, Chris (13 September 2011). "SAP TechEd: SAP bets big on HANA". ChannelBuzz Canada. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Henschen, Doug (14 December 2011). "SAP: We'll Be No. 2 Database Player By 2015". Information Week. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Kwinika, Savious (10 November 2011). "SAP wants all ERP use HANA". CAJ News. Retrieved 12 January 2012.
- Vishal Sikka executive bio at Forbes.com
- Dr. Vishal Sikka executive bio at infosys.com
- Vishal Sikka executive bio at sap.com
- InfoSys website
- InfoSys CEO website