Azim Premji optimistic about US economy in 2nd half of 2015-16 fiscal

Says the unemployment data in the US has been positive and there appears to be confidence of seeing hike in calendar year 2016

Azim Premji optimistic about US economy in 2nd half of 2015-16 fiscal

An optimistic Azim Premji has said that the US economy is expected to pick up in the second half of the year, although it became sluggish in the first half after posting a growth of 2.4 per cent in calendar year 2015-16.

The Wipro chairman drove home this point about the current state of the US economy while addressing shareholders at the company's annual general meeting in Bengaluru.

Explaining further, he said the unemployment data in the US had been positive and there appeared to be confidence of seeing hike in calendar year 2016.

Noting that the run-up to Brexit had created a significant overhang on the global economy, he said he does not see a contagion effect as Britain's exit (from the European Union) appeared to be a regional problem.

"Eurozone continues to grapple with challenges around growth and low inflation coupled with geopolitical concerns. From an IT perspective, it continues to be a very strategic market for us," he remarked.

Meanwhile, observing that China's growth had slowed down impacting commodity prices globally, Premji said its focus had shifted to services from manufacturing.

"India continued to be a bright spot on the global canvas with the economy growing 7.6 per cent in fiscal year 2015-16.

"Monsoon is a big positive. Capital flows are expected to be robust with flows in FDI (foreign direct investment) due to opening up of various sectors and favorable growth expectation," he asserted.

In this context, the chairman said the outlook was stable for economics that form key markets for the IT major.

"In 2015-16, gross revenues crossed Rs.50,000 crore, growing 9 per cent over the previous fiscal (2014-15), while net income grew 3 per cent to Rs.8,892 crore in FY 2015," Premji said.

Transforming into a next-generation technology and consulting firm over the past five years, global software major Wipro has built a stronger client-facing organization and increased wins in large deals by investing in building the capability in its employees.

"Vice-chairman T.K. Kurien will focus on key strategic initiatives, besides providing continuity on client relationships without disruption.

"A strong track record of success with customers, passion for excellence and rigour in execution makes Abidali Neemuchwala a natural choice to lead Wipro through the next phase of growth.

"The leadership transition from one chief executive (Kurien) to the other (Abidali Neemuchwala) had benefitted the company," Premji added.

Neemuchwala joined the IT outsourcing major on April 1, 2015, as president and chief operating office and became chief executive on February 1.