Cost reduction, expansion top agenda for L&Ts new CEO

Reducing cost and expanding to newer geographies will be top on the agenda of Krishnamurthi Venkataramanan, the newly appointed CEO and MD of the corporate giant Larsen and Toubro.

"Considering the current situation and volatility my concentration will be on reducing cost...Also we will look at new geographies beyond the Gulf and South East Asia," Venkataramanan, 67, told reporters after his appointment.

 Cost reduction, expansion top agenda for L&Ts new CEO

Reuters

The announcement of his appointment to the coveted post from April 1, was made today. Venkataramanan is currently a whole-time director and President of the company's hydrocarbon business.

He said his focus will be on the engineering and construction segment which constitute over 80 percent of the conglomerate's business. Venkataramanan said that apart from these, top on his priorities will be ensuring that projects get completed within the stipulated timeframe.

"Also, want to focus on doing all projects on time as we cannot afford delays in projects in this situation," he said. The company, as on December 31, had an order book of Rs 1,45,768 crore.

Venkataramanan has been with the $ 12-billion group since 1969, when he joined it as a Graduate Engineer Trainee. Later he was elevated to board member in 1995. In the new structure, Venkataramanan would be responsible for the day-to-day businesses of L&T.

In a much-awaited succession plan, Larsen and Toubro appointed Venkataramanan as its new CEO and Managing Director and said its current chief A M Naik would remain Executive Chairman for the next five years. It is the first time in over eight years that L&T has bifurcated the roles of Chairman and MD.

Naik while, addressing the media said, "Venkatramanan will look at parent and core businesses, where some restructuring is on and I will help him," adding Venkataramanan was the most competent person to hold the position of CEO and MD.

L&T is one of the largest corporate groups in the country and its revenue grew by 19 per cent to over Rs 52,000 crore in last financial year, 2010-11. The post-tax profit of the group also grew by 12 per cent to over Rs 4,200 crore last fiscal.

L&T was foundedin 1938 by two Danish engineers, Henning Holck-Larsen and Soren Kristian Toubro, to provide engineering services to the Indian industry. It became a public company in December 1950 and its total sales that year stood at about Rs 1.09 crore. The group currently has an employee strength of about 38,000 people.

PTI

Updated Date: Dec 20, 2014 06:56:17 IST