Arvind Krishna joins elite Indian-origin CEOs’ club, IBMers ecstatic

New Delhi: Arvind Krishna, the newly-appointed CEO of the world’s oldest technology company IBM, has joined the high-profile league of Indian-American honchos who are calling the shots at the $1-trillion strong companies in the Silicon Valley.

Krishna, 57, joins Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella, Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Adobe President and CEO Santanu Narayan and Mastercard’s CEO Ajay Banga — people who have taken the Indian talent to new heights.

An IBM veteran who joined the company 30 years back, Krishna did his schooling from Stanes Higher Secondary School in Bedford, Coonoor. He earned his BE in electrical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur (1980-1985) and earned a PhD in electrical and computer engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Currently IBM Senior Vice President for Cloud and Cognitive Software, he leads the IBM business unit that provides the cloud and data platform on which IBM’s clients build the future.

His current responsibilities also include the IBM Cloud, IBM Security and Cognitive Applications business, and IBM Research.

Previously, he was general manager of IBM’s Systems and Technology Group’s development and manufacturing organization, according to the company. Prior to that, Krishna built and led many of IBM’s data-related businesses.

Last year, He led the largest acquisition in IBM’s history – the $34 billion takeover of open source software giant Red Hat.

In India, Red Hat, which specializes in Linux operating systems, has engineering facilities in Pune and Bengaluru.

The elevation of Krishna comes as a boon for India which has the highest number of IBMers outside of US and is a key research and innovation hub for IBM that set up its first office in the country almost 26 years back.

Krishna, who guides IBM’s overall strategy in core and emerging technologies including Artificial Intelligence (AI), quantum computing, Blockchain, Cloud platform services, data-driven solutions and nanotechnology, will have the task at hand to tap the growing talent pool in new-age technologies and leverage the true potential.

It has been 26 years since IBM re-established its presence here in India.

Over the last two decades, the company has paved the way for the introduction of information technology on a large scale – from driving India’s telecom revolution to powering India’s banking backbone, transforming enterprises across sectors and creating hundreds of highly trained and skilled IT professionals and developers coding for the next IT revolution which is digital.

Today, every single interbank transaction in India is made with IBM, two of the largest telcos, nine out of 10 banks, 2/3rd of milk and dairy products industry, country’s largest airport (traffic), etc are run and managed by IBM.

Arvind which is from Indian Institute of Technology, Kanpur (IITK) knows the potential the country has and will aim to go bullish on India, especially on the R&D and innovation to create for the world.

IBM was one of the first MNCs to recognize India as an innovation hub and setup its first Research lab in IIT Campus, Delhi in 1993 to provide back-end support to its global business.

Today, IBM’s four labs in India – India Research Labs, India Software Labs, IBM Systems Development Labs and Global Technology Services Labs – are innovation centers for global product development, new services and solutions.

With over 900 patents, India became the second largest contributor in the world in 2019 to help IBM achieve a milestone of most patents ever awarded to a US company.

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