Sikka's Aikido mantra for Infosys revenue boost may just be old wine in new bottle

Aiming for a $20 billion revenue by 2020, Infosys, CEO, Vishal Sikka on Thursday unveiled a new services strategy, coinciding with founder NR Narayana Murthy's birthday. The strategy, which has been named Aikido, focuses on design thinking, platforms and knowledge-based IT.

Investors seem to be keeping faith in the new development, as the company's shares are rising in a falling market. However, this cannot be fully attributed to the announcement made yesterday (a falling rupee is also good news for software exporters).

 Sikkas Aikido mantra for Infosys revenue boost may just be old wine in new bottle


Most of the analysts have said termed that the strategy is in line with the company's aim to reach the $20 billion revenue target by 2020. For one, Morgan Stanley, according to CNBC-TV18, has "given a thumbs up to these initiatives saying it’s a step ahead in the company’s 2020 vision".

So what is this Aikido? Aikido, according to Sikka, is "an East Asian martial art with its deep rooted origin in Kerala".

"Aikido is all about transforming, converting, and leveraging the chaotic energy of an opponent into a great focused direction," he said at the townhall announcing the new strategy.

"When we look at the chaotic energy that is inside an enterprise and is in the middle of a transformation we believe that the principal of Aikido -- of taking that chaotic energy and turning it into a focused precision -- is something that can help us move enterprises forward," he has been quoted as saying.

An IANS report says this is the Infosys 3.0 version (software services, system integration and application development is Infosys 1.0; and products, platforms and consulting services is 2.0).

The first of these services is "Ki" which is a large-scale modular service to help renew enterprise landscapes. Services in this space will include knowledge-based IT strategy, which will involve KBIT assessments, knowledge curation services focused on helping enterprises consolidate and transition business, operations and workforce, among others.

Second is "Do" which refers to the service offering on design thinking and design-led initiatives that will provide Infosys the framework for finding, understanding and defining the problems that are most important to clients and their businesses.

Third is "Ai" which refers to platforms as a service to build intelligent solutions. This includes Infosys Information Platform, an open source data analytics platform that enables businesses to operationalise their data assets and uncover new opportunities for rapid innovation and growth.

"Ai- is combining; Ki- the energy, the knowledge; and Do- the path- together will help us and our clients combine our energy and knowledge along our path," Sikka has been quoted as saying in a PTI report.

Brokerage Ambit has explained these in simple terms: AI refers to platforms/artificial intelligence; Ki is knowledge-based IT/renew existing IT systems and Dis is design thinking.

According to the brokerage, Ai will be led by Infosys’ Edgeverve subsidiary and Ki and Do by Infosys Consulting.

It has also noted that the compay has been offering these services for a while now. "AiKiDo is the new bottle for the old wine," it said in a reasearch report today.

"Even though these new service offerings will likely remain a small part of overall revenues, smart marketing around these will likely have a positive rub-off effect on the remaining less exciting service offerings," the brokerage has said noting that one should underestimate the power of marketing in an increasingly commoditised industry.

Updated Date: Aug 21, 2015 12:48:21 IST