Satyam not a sinking ship, says Mahindra (Lead)

April 20th, 2009 - 8:16 pm ICT by IANS  

Ramalinga Raju Hyderabad, April 20 (IANS) Tech Mahindra, the new owner of Satyam Computer Services, Monday said it was excited about the prospects of the fraud-hit IT major and that restoring financial health was the priority.
After the first meeting with the government-appointed board, Anand Mahindra, chief of Mahindra Group, said Satyam would remain a stand-alone unit in foreseeable future and its leadership would continue with marginal changes.

“Satyam is going to be a very strong and viable entity. I don’t think it’s a sinking ship. No longer. It may not be a racing car yet that is what we want to make it one. I believe that Satyam is on a way to very viable future,” he told reporters after the interaction with the six-member government-appointed board.

Stating that there are still regulatory constraints, Mahindra declined to answer specific questions, especially about Satyam’s liabilities.

He expressed hope that the company would win back clients and clinch new deals.

Vineet Nayar, vice-chairman and chief executive of Tech Mahindra, said the new chief financial officer (CFO) would be named in the next few weeks.

The new buyer left it to A.S.R. Murthy to continue as the CEO of the company. Murthy, appointed as CEO by the government-appointed board, has expressed his willingness to continue.

Tech Mahindra said it was too early to comment on whether there would be lay-offs.

Earlier, the board said an “open offer” would be announced Tuesday to obtain an additional 20 percent stake in the software major.

Tech Mahindra, which deposited Rs.2,910 crore in an escrow account Monday for a 31 percent stake in Satyam, will see its total holding increase to 51 percent after the open offer.

Satyam board chairman Kiran Karnik said the six directors appointed to the board by the government will continue in their posts till further orders from the Company Law Board. Tech Mahindra will appoint up to four more members.

The board has submitted a list of 100 key Satyam employees to Tech Mahindra, Karnik said, adding that no decision had been taken yet on the continuation of Ram Manyampati, who was the interim chief executive after disgraced former chairman B. Ramalinga Raju stepped down.

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