Arvind Krishna Becomes Latest Indian-Origin Executive To Lead a Global Tech Giant

The IIT Kanpur alumnus will succeed Virginia Rometty as the chief executive officer of IBM. He currently heads the company's cloud business and was a key figure in the company's much-publicized acquisition of Red Hat.

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IIT Kanpur alumnus Arvind Krishna has become the latest in a series of Indian-origin executives to lead large US tech companies. Krishna will succeed Virginia Rometty as the chief executive officer of New York-headquartered International Business Machines (IBM). 

IBM Twitter

Rometty has held the position since January 2012. Krishna will officially take over the duties starting April 6, the company said in a statement. 

Krishna joined IBM in 1990 and has held various positions in the organization since. He currently heads IBM’s cloud business and was a key figure in the company’s much-publicized acquisition of Red Hat.

Rometti said, “Arvind has grown IBM's cloud and cognitive software business and led the largest acquisition in the company's history. Through his multiple experiences running businesses in IBM, Arvind has built an outstanding track record of bold transformations and proven business results, and is an authentic, values-driven leader. He is well-positioned to lead IBM and its clients into the cloud and cognitive era.”

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The Booming List Of Indian-Origin Leaders

Announcement of Krishna as the new CEO of IBM adds to the burgeoning list of Indian-origin folks holding key leadership roles in some of the largest tech companies of the world. Sundar Pichai, Google and Alphabet CEO; Satya Nadella, Microsoft CEO; Shantanu Narayen, Adobe Systems CEO; Ajay Banga, MasterCard CEO are some prime examples.

Talking about his vision to lead the tech giant, Krishna said, “I am looking forward to working with IBMers, Red Hatters and clients around the world at this unique time of fast-paced change in the IT industry.”

Jubilation On Twitter

The news of Krishna becoming the CEO of IBM has also made twitteratis rejoice. Many have congratulated Krishna on his success, the most notable one being Anand Mahindra, chairman at Mahindra Group. “What a stunning endorsement of the managerial capabilities of Indian-origin managers. Satya, Sundar, Shantanu & Arvind running four US tech giants. This places a responsibility on Indian managers to demonstrate that they can take Indian companies to the top as well...!”, Mahindra said in a tweet.

Krishna’s alma mater, IIT Kanpur also celebrated the announcement. “Another proud moment for IIT Kanpur! Our Distinguished Alumnus Awardee Dr. Arvind Krishna has been appointed the CEO of IBM,” tweeted Abhay Karandikar, Director, IIT Kanpur.

Krishna holds an undergraduate degree in electrical engineering from IIT Kanpur and a PhD from the University of Illinois in electrical and computer engineering.