Nadar, 76, will remain as chairman emeritus & strategic advisor for HCL Technologies, the company said. C Vijayakumar, President and CEO will also be the managing director for five years, HCL Technologies informed in a BSE filing. Nadar’s daughter Roshni Malhotra-Nadar took over as chairperson of HCL technologies last July.
HCL Technologies earned a revenue of $ 10.18 billion in FY 21, next only to TCS and Infosys.
HCL, considered as one of India’s earliest garage startups, began with building calculators and microprocessors when it started. In two years, HCL had designed and launched India’s first 8C microcomputer, around the same time as Apple.
HCL was synonymous with home-grown computers till the outsourcing opportunity came up late in the 1990s, which it tapped along with other Indian IT services companies. Its hardware business slowly lost steam as India opened its market for personal computers (PCs) and the country lost out to China as a hardware destination.
“If Shiv Nadar was in California he would have built HCL ten times the size of what he is today given the support that is available to start-ups there,” Vineet Nayar, founder of Sampark Foundation and a former CEO of HCL Technologies told ET last year. “His efforts really gave birth to many companies such as NIIT Technologies, Comnet etc,” he said.
A Rajnikanth fan, Nadar has often said that he takes inspiration from the three women in his life — mother Vamasundara Devi, who inspired him to give back to society; wife Kiran Nadar, founder of the Kiran Nadar Museum of Art and who is involved in his philanthropy work, and daughter Roshni Nadar Malhotra, who works with him on philanthropy as well as now being the Chairman of the HCL Technologies Board.
In 2008, Nadar was honoured with the Padma Bhushan.
For over a decade, Nadar has stepped away from running HCL, trusting his executives to build the business, while he focused on setting strategy and philanthropy as the chairman of the Shiv Nadar Foundation.
Like Azim Premji, who stepped down as the chairman of Wipro in July last year to focus on philanthropy, Nadar believes India needs foundations that would build solutions at scale to solve problems in society.
The foundation, which started 25 years ago with SSN College of Engineering, has six institutions under its umbrella now, covering the whole spectrum of education and charting a new road in the field of art.