After buyers, CEO-aspirants now target Satyam

January 21st, 2009 - 10:36 pm ICT by IANS  

Ramalinga RajuHyderabad, Jan 21 (IANS) The newly-formed board of the scam-tainted IT bellwether Satyam Computer Wednesday said the company has received a large number of applications for the job of the chief executive and chief financial officer (CFO).A day earlier, it had confirmed being “approached by potential buyers”.

“I have got 40 applications (for the post of CEO and CFO). We are in the process of finding good candidates,” Deepak Parekh, a board member and chairman of the Housing Development Finance Corp (HDFC), told reporters in Mumbai. He did not elaborate.

Another board member, Tarun Das, Tuesday officially confirmed receiving buyout offers, announcing in Delhi that “the board hasn’t discussed the issue of a buyer, though we have been approached by potential buyers”.

Ahead of the next board meeting here Thursday, Corporate Affairs Minister Prem Chand Gupta also talked of buyout offers for Satyam.

“There are many corporate houses, they are interested,” Gupta told reporters when asked if the government was interested in hiving off the beleaguered firm to engineering and construction giant Larsen and Toubro.

“The government has not taken any view on this. We feel it is for the board to take a call. As far as the government is concerned, there is no such thinking, no such move,” Gupta added.

The two issues - the buyout offer and appointment of a CEO and a CFO - are likely to discussed at Thursday’s board meeting. The central government formed the new six-member board after disgraced Satyam founder B. Ramalinga Raju Jan 7 confessed to a Rs.70-billion (Rs.7,000-crore/$1.43-billion) accounting fraud.

Meanwhile, the new board has begun talks with banks and financial institutions to raise funds to pay the salaries to over-50,000 employees and meet other expenditure.

Parekh indicated Wednesday this has proved a tough task as receivables (payments due from clients) were pledged to get funds from the banks.

“We are in the process (of raising funds). Banks will be hesitant to lend unless the accounts are restated with some level of accuracy,” he said.

On the issue of retaining clients in the light of reports that many want to move out, Parekh said the board has received mixed response.

“We are in talks with clients. We have got a mixed response. Some are not happy with the current status of the company’s accounts,” he said.

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