Cisco splits India biz responsibility, brings three presidents

Enterprise IT vendor Cisco has decided to split the responsibility of its top leadership team by bringing three presidents.

The change in leadership follows the exit of Jeff White, president of India & SAARC, Cisco, who was the leader of the India board and a dismal performance in some of the recent quarters. Cisco India posted 1 percent decrease in revenue in Q3 fiscal quarter and 18 percent dip in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.

Cisco recently said it is expecting a decline in its global revenue in the current quarter.

Also read: Cisco India revenue decrease 1 percent

The new leadership team includes: Dinesh Malkani, president – Sales for India & SAARC; Amit Phadnis, president – Engineering & India Site Leader; and V C Gopalratnam, president – Strategy, Planning and Operations, India and CIO, Asia Pacific and Japan & Greater China.

New India focus

IT vendors including Cisco are expecting more investments by Indian enterprises after the formation of the new government by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. BJP manifesto focuses on technology to improve the conditions of India. On Wednesday, Modi asked his secretaries to focus on technology to solve people issues.

Also read: Has Huawei given up enterprise IT goals to Cisco in India?

Earlier, Jeff White was the president of India & SAARC, responsible for Cisco’s sales and operations in the region. White had the role of Leader of a new India Board, which comprises executives from Cisco headquarters as well as India.

Also read: Cisco India President Jeff White on IoT opportunities

Earlier, White was reporting to Jaime Vallés, president of Cisco in Asia Pacific, Japan and Greater China (APJC).

As per the earlier plan, White was supposed to partner with Faiyaz Shahpurwala, senior vice president, Industry Solutions and India Site Leader, to drive innovation and talent in alignment with the national agenda to transform the economy through technology.


White was also working with Wim Elfrink, executive vice president, Industry Solutions and chief globalisation officer.

The mandate for White was to support the growth by strengthening local innovation, and continuing to forge strong relationships with customers, partners and the government.

Cisco new plans

As per the new plan, the new leadership team will accelerate Cisco’s momentum by strengthening its focus on innovation to lead market transitions.

Dinesh Malkani, who’s taking over from Jeff White, will report to Irving Tan, Cisco’s President, Asia Pacific & Japan.

The main responsibility of Dinesh will be to lead the company’s efforts to help transform the country’s economy through technology. He will drive Cisco’s senior level external engagement, including those with government and industry associations, to drive growth and market leadership in India and SAARC, said Cisco.

As the new India Site Leader, Amit Phadnis will lead Cisco’s focus on innovation, ecosystem and talent development in the country. Amit will focus on strengthening the interlock between Cisco’s teams, including engineering and sales, and customers and partners and employee engagement.

Amit will continue to report into the organization led by Rob Soderbery, senior vice president & general manager of the Enterprise Networking Group in the US.

In the newly created role of president of Strategy, Planning and Operations for Cisco India, Gopalratnam will help create synergies between Cisco’s internal IT organization and the company’s technology roadmap as well as drive infrastructure development and operations to facilitate growth and productivity.

Gopal will continue to report to Rebecca Jacoby, Cisco’s global CIO.

Baburajan K