WHY WE DID THE STORY: This was our second cover on Infosys and was written at a time when speculation was raging over who would be the next chairman of the company. N.R.N. Murthy had announced he would retire in August 2011 and the nominations committee had little more than a year to find his replacement. The odds were heavily stacked in favour of K.V. Kamath. No one at that time knew what Kamath would do when he came in. There were signs that Infosys was slipping from its pedestal as the bellwether stock.
Outwardly there were no signs of trouble, Infosys was growing and was still the most profitable company in the sector. But internally a debate was raging — how long will Infosys conform to the Murthy doctrine? How long were the founders going to hold operational roles?
It took me almost three months to figure all this out. Forbes India Editor Indrajit Gupta and Executive Editor Charles Assisi went over several versions of the draft. Gupta spent hours discussing the story with me, never giving up on the idea. What he taught me was a valuable lesson. He said, ‘You cannot always use past data to analyse future events. Infosys was and is a great company, but the question really is — Will it remain a great company?’