New Delhi: IT czar Azim H Premji, who is set to retire as the executive chairman of Wipro, said on Thursday that steering the company had been the greatest privilege of his life and exuded confidence that his son will lead it to greater heights.
Premji will pass over the baton to his son Rishad in July-end after leading the charge at the company for over five decades.
He will, however, continue to serve on the board as a non-executive director for five years till July 2024 and has also been conferred the title of founder chairman. Rishad, is currently chief strategy officer and a board member of Wipro.
In a message to employees, Premji exuded confidence that Wipro will continually transform to scale new heights as the world changes but remain firmly committed to its values.
"I am confident that the future of Wipro will far outshine anything that we have done before," he said adding that Rishad brought to the role new ways of thinking, experience, and competence that would lead Wipro to greater heights.
Wipro board also announced that chief executive officer and executive director Abidali Z Neemuchwala will be re-designated as CEO and managing director, while Rishad Premji will be re appointed as whole-time director for a period of five years with effect from July 31, 2019, to July 30, 2024. Rishad will be designated as executive chairman.
"Rishad and Abid will lead this transformation along with all of you," Premji said.
Rishad, he said, has been an integral part of the leadership team since 2007 and has an intimate understanding of the company, from operations to strategy.
"Rishad will continue to serve on the Board of the Azim Premji Foundation, the philanthropic organisation, which now owns 67 per cent of the economic interest of Wipro Limited. Thus, in his new role, he will also represent the largest stakeholder of Wipro," Premji said.
In a separate message to employees after the company announced the top level changes, Rishad said that future shines bright for Wipro whose greatest strength is its people.
"Over the past 53 years, Premji has led and built Wipro from a tiny business in Amalner to this globally successful and admired organisation that we are today. But his contribution and achievements go beyond the success of Wipro. He is among the global pioneers of the IT industry," Rashid said.
Rishad said that his father reshaped the world of Indian business, demonstrating that success can be achieved with unflinching commitment to integrity.
"As he retires, leaving this great legacy in our hands there is only one way to thank him and express our gratitude we must continually take Wipro to newer heights. We must chart new paths and win new frontiers, while consolidating our strongholds...," Rishad said.