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HP partnership makes us very different from others

WITH Rs 4,263 crore in revenues for the year to October 2009, HP-owned MphasiS is proving to be a critical offshore partner for the computer
Ganesh Ayyar, CEO, MphasiS
megacorp’s global services business. Ganesh Ayyar, the company’s chief executive, tells ET in an interview that in a year where many firms had to struggle for new businesses, MphasiS was able to achieve volume growth because of its partnership with HP. MphasiS also outbid rivals to acquire AIG’s India captive centre earlier this year. Excerpts:

More than half your revenues come from HP-related work, including their internal IT jobs, as well as new businesses gained from HP-Mphasis joint go-to-market initiatives. How do you see this evolving going forward?

The HP partnership offers us an opportunity to be a critical piece of their jigsaw puzzle. They obviously are one of the biggest IT companies. Other way to look at it is to classify us as a pure-play, nimble organisation. The partnership makes us very different from everybody else.

As for the revenues from HP and others, I think that both the engines need to fire. This partnership is externally-linked and is not causing any dependence. We have been increasing the number of joint wins. In fact, this quarter, 13 of the total new wins came from HP. Within that, 12% is HP’s internal projects, 16% is migration work and 43-45% comes from our joint go-to-market moves.

Having acquired AIG’s captive, do you still see more acquisition opportunities? What are the gaps you plan to fill through these inorganic initiatives?

We are looking at acquisitions across three dimensions — vertical strengths, delivery capabilities and geographic presence — which is close to the ‘string of pearls’ strategy. On the vertical front, banking, financial services and insurance is what we want to grow more. AIG was aimed at growing insurance business. Healthcare, life sciences and pharma are other areas we feel that have potential to grow. Even telecom sector offers opportunities.

We have $200 million in cash, which will be used for acquisitions. During the fourth quarter, we added around $66 million in cash. So our entire strategy is built around operational excellence and using that money for appropriate opportunities.

How do you plan to expand your delivery centres in India and overseas? Would you be trying to avoid any overlap with HP’s delivery centres?

We are still pursuing the first stage of growing our offshore delivery centres. In around four weeks from now, we will announce a centre in one of the emerging markets. We will have to keep in mind the overlap with the partner for any delivery centre we open.

But that is not going to be a constraint. We are already in negotiations for two locations for this new centre. We already have a centre in China for serving Japanese as well as local customers. On the sales front, we have restructured the entire organisation across three service lines.

For IT outsourcing, the business head also looks after markets in the Asia-Pacific and Japan. We have another president heading sales for application business across Europe, the Middle East and Africa and another business head for the BPO business focused on America.