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Infosys BPM’s $1bn Milestone & Future Trajectory

Infosys BPM has reached its 18th birthday, in many cultures the age of maturity, achieving a major milestone of $1bn in annual revenues. Infosys BPM today is a very different company from its birth in 2002 when it was set up as a JV in India with Citibank, and there have been some significant developments in the last couple of years.

We recently caught up with Infosys BPM CEO Anantha Radhakrishnan, and while he is intensely conscious that it not a time for celebrations when a pandemic is raging, there is a clear confidence about Infosys BPM’s future trajectory. While not quite celebrating, there is a quiet pride about what the company has been doing to help fight the spread of the infection in the state of Karnataka.

Delivering effective COVID-19 programs

What has been achieved in Karnataka (population 64m+) in a contact, inform and track program in a very short time is quietly remarkable (it certainly appears so to me; my own government, a nation with a similar sized population, has yet to introduce any such program). Karnataka is vulnerable to the virus coming into the state via international travellers flying into Bangalore and Mangalore airports. Its state government turned to Infosys BPM to help launch and manage a program to respond to this specific threat, also a second broader program focusing on citizens across the state.

In the first program, Infosys BPM designed and managed a program to reach out digitally to all travellers coming into Karnataka from March 1 onwards, capture their relevant health data via an app, monitor their health for 14 days, provide a help number should they develop any COVID-19 type symptoms, and also advise on quarantine procedures.

In the second larger program, citizens have been encouraged via an extensive multimedia outreach program to log relevant health and non-health information on an app or helpline number. On the basis of the data they provide, they are given advice on appropriate action to take, with help being arranged in exceptional circumstances. The system integrates with the state’s own hospital and ambulance systems. And in the event of any infection hotspots, it can be used to send localized messages to citizens living in a particular cell phone tower or village. Infosys BPM helped define the outreach strategy, designed the ‘Apthamitra’ app (‘close friend’ in the local language), and assembled a consortium of nine BPS companies that have operations in the state to operate the inbound and outreach program. This activity illustrates the maturity of Infosys BPM in its ability to design and launch a major program from scratch.

In terms of transforming its service delivery operations during the pandemic, Infosys BPM has equipped all its centers outside India to reach 95% WFH enablement. China has returned to a hybrid model with about 70% office-based employees, 30% WFH. The India BPM operations are 75% WFH enabled (the 25% including personnel not yet in production). Radha referred to having received 300 emails from clients expressing their appreciation of Infosys going above and beyond to maintain service delivery.

$1bn milestone & beyond

Against the backdrop of COVID-19, Infosys got to the end of its fiscal year achieving its 1$bn revenue target. This has been done through a combination of market-leading organic growth (nearly 17% CC growth in its FY20) and two interesting JVs set up in 2019, in both of which Infosys has a majority stake.

In Japan, Infosys has an 81% stake in Hitachi Procurement Service Co., Ltd. (HIPUS), which handles indirect materials purchasing functions for some Hitachi Group businesses in Japan. Also part of the JV are Panasonic and staffing company Pasona. Normally with JVs such as this, the primary focus is to commercialize and expand the operation. The size of the unit operated by Infosys is already significant and the immediate focus is slightly different. The initial priorities include:

  • Transforming the operations by bringing in modern thinking about procurement processing, including the application of RPA, AI and analytics to streamline operations and improve the UX of buyers
  • Expanding its coverage within the Hitachi Group, as well as offering indirect procurement services to Japanese-owned corporations, serving both their domestic and international needs.

The CPOs of Hitachi and of Panasonic are on the board of HIPUS, which will help in driving both of these priorities.

And in Europe, Infosys has a 75% stake in Stater, a mortgage administration services provider headquartered in the Netherlands; ABN AMRO, its largest client, retains a minority stake. As with HIPUS, there is an emphasis on digital transformation of the service (in this case, transformation of the whole mortgage and loan experience by leveraging dynamic workflow, API layers, RPA, analytics and AI), and of course Infosys will also continue to enhance Stater’s mortgage platform. In addition to developing a next-gen mortgage offering, the opportunities for growth in the JV lie in:

  • Further expansion of its service offerings, for example beyond those around mortgages to adjacent unsecured loan types, also in expanding its activities in supplementary services such as risk models for fraud prevention, leveraging Infosys’ analytics capabilities
  • Expansion of the client base. An obvious opportunity is expansion in Germany (though this remains a market where home ownership is relatively uncommon): for example, Deutsche Bank, with whom Infosys has a strong relationship, is a relatively small account for Stater.

These JVs are a significant expansion of Infosys BPM, one in back-office enterprise services, the other in an industry-specific offering. Infosys BPM has reached a point where its revenue mix is 60% from enterprise services and 40% from industry-specific services. Radhakrishnan’s ambition is for Infosys BPM to reach a roughly 50/50 split, with at least 30% of this being platform-, or quasi-platform, based. In the U.S. Infosys BPM has a longstanding insurance platform business with McCamish, and it is also providing mortgage services to clients including one of the largest U.S. regional banks.

As well as these JVs, Infosys acquired last year a 1,400 person contact center in Northern Ireland that has clients in the telecoms, social media, healthcare, ed-tech and fintech sectors. Its largest client is BT, also an Infosys client: here, BT benefits from the investment that Infosys BPM can make to transform this onshore service by applying digital technologies.

The year ahead for Infosys BPM

So, what might we expect from Infosys BPM over the next year? Every crisis presents its own opportunities; and while its scale is larger than anything we have seen in our lives, COVID-19 is no different. For example, there are going to be lots of BPS captives up for sale as enterprises look to raise cash: but interested vendors should be careful to select those ones that will enhance their capabilities. Infosys BPM is proactively pitching for opportunities for targeted captives of clients in the wider Infosys Group (there is plenty of scope: Radhakrishnan points out that Infosys Group has around 1,200 clients, mostly large enterprises, of whom just 200 are also Infosys BPM clients). It is possible, therefore, that Infosys BPM might be completing more structured deals in 2020, where it will look to modernize, simplify and digitally transform the operation, possibly extending its capabilities into more sectors and/or expanding its capabilities in certain back-office areas.

As it reaches its $1bn revenue milestone, the mood at Infosys BPM is more appreciative than jubilant, but there is a quiet confidence and sense of purpose as it looks to take advantage of new opportunities.

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