TCS’ Mr Dependable Ravi Viswanathan is new marketing chief

MUMBAI: India’s largest IT firm Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) has appointed veteran Ravi Viswanathan as its global chief marketing officer.

Viswanathan’s appointment comes at a time when the company, like its peers, is battling not just increasing competition but also heightened protectionism in its largest market — US. Viswanathan, who will be in charge of the marketing and communications functions and based in Chennai, will directly report to new CEO Rajesh Gopinathan.

His previous role of managing emerging geographies — India, the Middle-East and Africa — has been reassigned to human resources head Ajoyendra Mukherjee.

“We have increased focus on marketing and brand building. The new position is based on the understanding that we need to articulate our value proposition more strongly and holistically across all markets and stakeholders,” Gopinathan told ET.

In addition to taking over marketing, which was handled by former CMO John Lenzen who quit TCS in 2016, Viswanathan will also handle the company’s communications. TCS, along with peers Infosys and Wipro, are competing with bigger global rivals such as IBM and Accenture for a larger share of the outsourcing business.

Protectionist measures and negative rhetoric on visa and jobs by US President Donald Trump has exacerbated the challenge. US accounted for 52.5% of the company’s revenue in the first quarter ended June.

“There is a going to be an aggressive marketing strategy in developed and developing markets. There are clear goals set for him by the CEO. He is going to get aggressively more involved in managing clients as well,” said a person familiar with the matter.

TCS is working to bring its operating margin closer to the annual targeted level of 26-28%. To achieve this ambitious target, the IT major needs to win a bigger pie of technology spend by Fortune 100 clients.

“It is not just overseas. Even in India people don’t fully understand what we are doing and the…

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