eCharcha.Com   Support eCharcha.Com. Click on sponsor ad to shop online!

Advertise Here

Go Back   eCharcha.Com > Current Affairs > Economy


Economy Fiscally fit?

Thread Tools Display Modes
Old September 16th, 2008, 10:46 AM
echarcha's Avatar
echarcha echarcha is online now
Sutradhar {admin}
Join Date: Jul 2000
Location: CA, USA
Posts: 45,505
echarcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond reputeecharcha has a reputation beyond repute
Exclamation Merrill, Lehman debacle: IT Inc wary, TCS to be hit hardest

Merrill, Lehman debacle: IT Inc wary

The news sent the global stock markets crashing, including Indian where Bombay Stock Exchange Sensex plunged 850 points or 6.1 per cent in intra-day trading. It later recovered half way to close at 13,531 points. However, Lehman and Merrill Lynch's India connections go far beyond just the financial industry.

The crisis at two iconic institutions could have come at a worst time for the Indian IT majors already reeling under slowdown in their biggest market US. The US financial market crisis is only likely to add to the troubles of Indian tech majors.

The erstwhile giants work with over a dozen service providers in the country, including big ticket players like TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Satyam, HCL and IBM.

The catastrophic events overtaking global financial majors will dent the revenues of Indian outsourcing majors, both in terms of the expected business and contracts they have already undertaken. As the affected investment banks are expected to pull out of some of their outsourcing arrangements.

The bankrupt Lehman Brothers has relationships with a number of top vendors but is not a major outsourcing company compared to some of its peers. “Lehman has been the worst outsourcing company among the investment banks. Compared to it, JP Morgan, Merrill Lynch and Morgan Stanley have been outsourcing a lot more aggressively. In 2003, its total outsourcing to vendors in India was only around $100 million,” said an analyst, adding that Wipro and TCS were among its vendors here.

“Lehman Brothers does not account for a significant portion of our revenue and we are in dialogue with them during this difficult period of uncertainty. Wipro is monitoring the US economic situation closely, but we have nothing more specific to communicate,” a statement from the company said. Wipro has around 400 employees working on software services and infrastructure management projects for Lehman.

Lehman's major impact will be on the lead provider Wipro and the second-largest provider TCS," said an industry observer. Lehman, which focuses on derivatives, broker dealer and asset management services, outsources application development and management solutions and services as well as back office solutions to Indian providers.

‘TCS to be hit hardest’

Number one software services vendor, Tata Consultancy Services, is likely to be worse off than its peers because of its significant exposure to Merrill Lynch which, analysts said, ranks among its top five financial services clients. The company is also a significant client of Satyam.

However, a Wipro spokesperson said Lehman does not account for a significant portion of the company's revenues. "We are in dialogue with them in this difficult period of uncertainty. Wipro is monitoring the US economic situation closely, but at this time we have nothing more specific to communicate,'' the company said.

HCL Technologies is also a vendor to Lehman but Premkumar S, who heads HCL financial services business, said its exposure was less than a single integer in percentage terms. Among the top five IT firms in India, HCL Technologies could possibly be the least hit by the crisis overtaking the global financial giants because of its lower exposure to financial services clients compared to its peers.

Traditionally, the company has been strong in engineering services. Apart from Bear Stearns, which was bailed out by JP Morgan, Citigroup is its other major financial services client of note. Analysts were unsure of who the other Indian IT and BPO vendors of Lehman were. They said Satyam and Infosys may also be among its vendors but none of them are were likely to have above $50 million in annual revenues from the bankrupt firm.

'May lead to further job cuts'
Merrill is also a significant client for Satyam Computer Services. Analysts estimate nearly 2,500 employees at TCS and Satyam work for Merrill.

According to reports, over 3,000 people are said to be working on Lehman's account from Mumbai and Bangalore, of which about 800 to 1,000 are likely to lose jobs. In the last six to nine months, Lehman was moving work from its third party players to its captive centres in Mumbai and Hyderabad. Aanad Lavi, head of Tholons Capital, said, "Generally it's a disturbing piece of information for providers in the country."

Sources say that Lehman Brother's captive unit in Mumbai has already issued termination letters to a majority of its 1500 employees. The captive unit provided support and financial process outsourcing to the company.

Vendor rationalisation

The Bank Am-Merrill Lynch deal may also have repercussions on Indian software outsourcing firms. Bank of America works with Infosys while Merrill Lynch outsources to Satyam.

"A vendor rationalisation is expected post integration. BoA may choose to stay with Infosys. There could be some over-lapping so there could be loss of a couple of hundred jobs in India. But it may take some six months," said an analyst.

Also, while like Satyam, Merrill Lynch is one of the key clients of TCS, the latter has an advantage as it already has a relationship going with Bank Am. However, Infosys happens to be on the right side of the deal. The company has a large relationship with Bank Am, while it also works for Merrill on a smaller scale.

No short-term effect

Analysts don't see any major challenge for IT companies in the short-term. However, in the long term it would lead to reduction in the amount of work outsourced to these service providers.

Also, with the US election on cards there is bound to be a further lag in outsourcing deals as outsourcing to countries like India remains a politically sensitive issue.

"The industry was expecting a recovery by mid 2009 and now it will be further delayed," said Sabya Sachi Satpathy, senior director of IT consulting company neoIT.

Tech investments

Lehman Brothers also has investments in a few IT firms. Lehman investments in India also include a 40 per cent stake in an IT park project of Peninsula Land in Hyderabad for an initial investment of Rs 50 crore.

Industry estimates that Lehman's cumulative outsourcing to Indian providers is worth around $200 million and that about 40 per cent of this business would be affected.

-Loud and Proud Desi Opinions
Reply With Quote


bpo, economy, globalization, india, offshoring, slowdown

Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
Thread Tools
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
The First was the Hardest !!!! Premi Life Abroad 21 October 26th, 2009 12:18 PM
BJPs internal report on poll debacle ashdoc Indian Politics 9 August 24th, 2009 12:28 PM
Another Big One After Lehman Falls viking Taaza Khabar - Current news 39 June 8th, 2009 12:34 PM
Americans Wary Of The Ever Innocent Pakistani's viking Taaza Khabar - Current news 0 July 20th, 2002 01:51 AM
The Sharjah debacle and Indians' team spirit arun Sports 1 October 31st, 2000 11:03 PM

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 03:00 PM.

Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.7.2
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.
Site Copyright © eCharcha.Com 2000-2012.