Emergic: Rajesh Jain's Blog

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Satyam, Pakistan and Slowdown

January 6th, 2009 · 7 Comments

The time around Christmas and New Year is when one ends up meeting a number of friends who are settled abroad. This year was no different. And there were three topics which were common in most discussions: Satyam, Pakistan and the Slowdown. Here is a summary of what I would say on each of them:

Satyam: There had to have been some deeper reason for Raju to make the decision he did. I have met him twice – in 1999 (a short meeting when Sify, a separate Internet company founded by Satyam, bought my company) and 2000 (when I was invited to participate in a 3-day Executive Leadership session led by Harvard faculty at the Hyderabad campus).  I came away deeply impressed with Raju on both occasions – especially, his openness, his intellect, his willingness to think long and make bold bets (Sify was one such venture). Perhaps, there was a cash crunch which necessitated a bailout at the Maytas companies. It will probably help Satyam and Raju if he stated (blogged?!) the real reasons – and then let everyone decide whether he did right or wrong.

Pakistan: War is not the solution. The only effective response India can probably give is to create an undercover team that goes after the perpetrators wherever they are. This is something we have to learn from Israel and also the covert CIA operations globally. (Maybe I have been reading too many fictionalised accounts of these!) We can beg and plead of the US and Pakistan for help but nothing is going to happen.

Slowdown: Yes, there is one. And it will stay for some time. But businesses like ours are too small and insignificant to really be impacted by it. And while other bigger players are distracted, it is a great opportunity to build innovative products and solutions. As a small company, one can only cut costs up to a point. At the end, the only thing that matters is revenue growth. And that will always happen if one has the right solutions and the right pitch to potential customers.

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7 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Janit // Jan 6, 2009 at 3:13 pm

    Maytas was facing a severe cash crunch, especially since they bid for the Hyderabad metro rail project – they bid too much in that and since the market crashed, they werent able to raise money for Maytas from there.
    And given the fact that infrastructure in India is a safer bet these days compared to servicing MNCs who are falling down like nine pins every other day, ibelieve that it was a good bet. But, unfortunately, they failed to win investor confidence and their PR was as it could get.

  • 2 suresh babu // Jan 6, 2009 at 8:25 pm

    Satyam- not nithyam
    Fourth top in indian it industry,A multinational company CEO should see in all aspects before major decisions taken place.
    He should call all his directors and discuss about new approval before meeting with media. Asmall wrong notion spoiled all the future of the company and its employes

  • 3 Siddhesh Ayre // Jan 7, 2009 at 12:20 pm

    I completely agree with you on the Pakistan issue. In fact, I am quite surprised by the way India always “asks” Pak to hand over Dawood. Any sovereign nation would have sent their agents to kill such a gangster.

  • 4 Santosh // Jan 8, 2009 at 12:27 am

    RE. Satyam, I guess now we know why he did it. Which begs another question, why didn’t anyone catch on to it?

  • 5 Abhi 2.0 // Jan 8, 2009 at 4:34 am

    “It will probably help Satyam and Raju if he stated (blogged?!) the real reasons – and then let everyone decide whether he did right or wrong.”

    Great call RJ, just a day later, his letter was out! I’m more intrigued as to why he even confessed. It was almost Hansie Cronje-esque … there were lots of ppl out there committing bigger sins but Hansie was the only one who owned up!

    Any insight into why he did this? Methinks he could have gone on without being caught

  • 6 None // Jan 10, 2009 at 6:16 pm

    I think that Mr. Rama must have given thought hundred of times before making decision. He is one of the best entrepreneurs. The only thing is that he was unlucky and the investors didn’t appreciate the deal.
    He made a mistake by cooking the books. ?he may have thought that in the next quarter, Satyam will make more money and then clear the debts. But, I guess, it didn’t work. And he went on an one…one quarter after the other. He became more optimistic than pragmatic. It was his fault. But, I do not understand one thing that why the media is portraying him like a terrorist. What he did was just to save the company. His way was wrong and intention was right “to save company and jobs of employees”. Government should deal him appropriately considering his past achievements for the country and the people.

  • 7 Ravi Kumar // Jan 11, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    As you said many companies – small or big getting affected by this scary & balooned slowdown; Unfortunately Satyam’s fiasco added fuel it. However companies with positive attitude have to immediately implement “The Blue Ocean Strategy”. You can get the brief presentation of this on my web page http://www.linkedin.com/in/ayilavarapuravikumar

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