Another Indian executive took office immediately. On April 6, U.S. time, IBM announced that Arvind Krishna had officially assumed the role of CEO, the same day Krishna issued a full letter saying that IBM would focus on artificial intelligence and hybrid cloud as key technologies for the future, and that IBM was an indispensable player in the current epidemic.
In fact, on January 30th IBM announced the appointment, more than two months after Krishna took over as head of IBM’s cloud computing business.
Former IBM CEO Virginia Rometty is the first female CEO in IBM’s 100-year history, and under her leadership, the Blue Giant has been through the controversial years. There have been media criticisms of Rometty as the worst CEO during a difficult 22-quarter decline in earnings.
Now that IBM has completed its change of talent, the Indians are facing a series of serious challenges.
About Alvind Krishna
Krishna has a “template” Indian elite resume, born in India, graduated from India, studied in the United States for graduate students, Ph.D…. Born in 1962 in Andhra Pradesh, India, Krishna attended the Indian Institute of Technology in Kanpur (which is made up of several branches), a school that must have graduated from one of India’s top engineering schools, Google CEO Michael Pichai, and others.
After arriving in the United States, Krishna received a Ph.D. in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.
Krishna began his career at IBM as an engineer in 1990, and Krishna, 57, has spent 30 years at IBM, where he first worked as a security and data engineer for Watson, a computing system.
Krishna’s resume, from Linkedin.
Krishna was promoted to Senior Vice President in 2015 and in 2017 he became a leader in IBM’s cloud computing business.
Krishna’s biggest achievement since his promotion to management was the dominance of IBM’s acquisition of Red Hat. In October 2018, IBM officially acquired Red Hat, an open source software company, for $34 billion, when Krishna was senior vice president and head of IBM Research for hybrid cloud, where he played a key role in the largest acquisition in IBM’s history and was the lead architect of the acquisition.
In January 2019, Krishna took over as SENIOR Vice President of IBM Cloud, overseeing the IBM Cloud platform, IBM Security, cognitive applications, and ibm research, which oversees cutting-edge business exploration such as quantum computers. The cloud is the future IBM is betting on, and the importance of this position is self-evident, and since then IBM has been interested in developing Krishna as another Indian CEO in Silicon Valley.
It’s important to note that Krishna’s 100 percent technology background separates him from IBM’s top three CEOs, and Gartner cloud computing analyst Craig Lowery says IBM’s appointment decision helps ensure the success of its cloud strategy because Krishna’s career has been focused on technology.
The technology-backed CEO may bring some change to big companies like IBM, who have publicly expressed a desire to preserve the freedom of thought and criticism of both companies at the Red Hair conference.
Dan Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, also commented on Krishna: “He’s willing to listen and accept criticism, he wants to really see who he is and who IBM is.”
IBM’s disease, can Indians cure?
On the same day, Krishna wrote to employees that IBM was already a leader in cloud computing, AI, blockchain, and quantum, and needed to deepen its understanding of two strategic battles in order to advance IBM’s hybrid cloud strategy:
One is to successfully embark on the journey to hybrid cloud and AI, and the other is to leverage IBM’s competitive resources, such as its leadership in open source.
The reality, though, is that IBM is obviously a little late in the cloud services market, and the market leaders are Amazon’s AWS and Microsoft’s Azure, and IBM’s acquisition of Red Hat took only six months to gain more technology and talent, reflecting IBM’s anxiety. However, it will take time to see how much the deal will bring to IBM.
The burden on the Indians is heavy. IBM is still a loud name, but the once-blue giant is no longer “huge” compared to its rivals, and IBM’s market capitalisation is now about $100 billion, about a tenth of that of its main rivals, Microsoft and Amazon.
IBM’s Q4 2019 results showed a small year-on-year increase in revenue, but net profit rose 88.1% year-on-year, but continued to be on a downward trend throughout 2019, in sharp contrast to the fire in U.S. technology stocks.
The cloud computing business was a bright spot in Red Hat’s contribution, with revenue from cloud computing and cognitive software, including Red Hat, growing 8.7 percent to a record $7.2 billion, and Red Hat contributed 5. $7.3 billion.
IBM’s most important business of the past, global technical services, technical consulting, global business services, and so on, are all in decline.
The good news is that the general lying attitude towards Krishna’s inauguration was largely positive, with IBM’s share price rising 5 per cent on the day the appointment was revealed. Some analysts have compared Pichai to technology-born CEOs as crucial to technology companies. The Blue Giant is looking forward to a return to its former glory under the leadership of the Indian-born CEO.
Indians rule Silicon Valley?
Google’s Shonda Pichai, Microsoft’s Satya Nadella… In the last 10 years, there have been 75 foreign CEOs and 10 seats for Indians in the world’s top 500 companies. Motorola, Pepsi, Nokia, Adobe, SanDisk, Unilever, MasterCard, Standard and Poor’s, and Micron all have an Indian CEO in charge of the company.
As you can see, Indians have become a force in Silicon Valley that cannot be ignored.
Not just management, middle-class and grass-roots employees, the Indians also occupy a large number of positions. One-third of Apple’s engineers are from India, and according to the Kaufman Foundation, 40 out of every 100 start-ups in Silicon Valley were created by immigrants between 2006 and 2012, about 12 of them by Indians.
Correspondingly, after Shen Xiangyang and Lu Qi, there are no more Chinese in the U.S. tech giants to hold important positions.
There are many reasons for this, first of all, the internal competition, the strength of Indian engineering institutions can not be underestimated, such as Pichai and Krishna graduates of the Indian Institute of Technology, the annual admission rate is only 2.8%, Indian Science and Technology to a large extent also refers to the California Institute of Science and Technology model.
Moreover, while many people derid Indians for their English accents, India’s average English level is significantly ahead of China’s, which is of course policy-related, and that India was once a British colony and English, one of the official languages of India, can be relatively smoothly integrated into the American environment.
A more critical issue is that India’s indigenous technology, internet industry is relatively backward, despite a considerable part of the pyramid of the top of the elite, but India is still a third world country, by the end of 2017, the country has 99 million people without electricity, the world’s largest electricity-
In this scenario, the elite has to float across the sea to develop, india at least two-thirds of its graduates each year will choose to leave India, 38% of whom will remain in the United States, India faces a considerable brain drain.
It is true that China’s software industry is indeed stronger than India’s, but it is true that Indians, especially the top brass, do play a bigger role in Silicon Valley than Chinese.