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N.R. Narayanamurthy Biography

N.R. Narayana Murthy, the founder of Infosys Technologies, is one of the most famous personalities in India’s I-T sector. Born on August 20, 1946, he obtained a degree in electrical engineering from the National Institute of Engineering under the University of Mysore in 1967, and went on to do his Masters from IIT Kanpur in 1969.

He joined Patni Computer Systems in Pune. While at Pune, he met his wife Sudha Murthy. In 1981, he founded Infosys alongwith with six other people. He also served as president of the National Association of Software and Service Companies, India from 1992 to 1994.

Murthy was the CEO of Infosys for twenty years, and was succeeded by Nandan Nilekani in March 2002. He functioned as the Executive Chairman of the Board and Chief Mentor from 2002 to 2006.

He is on the governing bodies of many leading institutes like the International Institute of Information Technology – Bangalore, and the Indian Institute of Management, Ahmedabad. He is a member of the Advisory Boards and Councils of various well-known institutions like the Ford Foundation, United Nations Foundation, University of Tokyo and the Institute of Advanced Study at Princeton. Other institutions he has been associated with are Stanford Graduate School of Business, the Corporate Governance initiative at the Harvard Business School, Yale University, Tuck School of Business, SMU and IIM Ahmedabad.

Besides, he has served on the Central Board of the Reserve Bank of India, as a member of the Prime Minister’s council on trade and industry, as a member of the Asia Advisory Board of British Telecommunications and was the Chairman of the committee on Corporate Governance appointed by the Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI) in 2003.

Narayanamurthy has won several accolades in India and abroad. In 2000, he was awarded the Padma Shri and was voted the World Entrepreneur of the Year – 2003 by Ernst & Young. In 2001, his name was included by TIME / CNN in the list of twenty-five, most influential global executives. He was ranked by the Economist as the 8th among the top 15 most admired global leaders in 2005.

Though he retired on 20th August, 2006, he continued to be the Non-Executive Chairman. From June 2013 to June 2014, he came back in the position of Executive Chairman and Additional Director. Otherwise, since 2011, he has taken the title Chairman Emeritus. He has also served on the boards of corporates like HSBC, Unilever, ICICI and DBS Bank.

Mr. Murthy was ranked among the top 10 of the Financial Times’ list of “Business pioneers in technology” in March 2015. He is also the first Indian winner of Ernst and Young’s World Entrepreneur of the Year award.

In 2019, he was elected as a member of the prestigious American Academy of Arts and Sciences. He is a foreign member of the US National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the Indian National Academy of Engineering. He received the Founders Medal in 2018, the Hoover medal in 2012 and the Ernst Weber Medal in 2007. Additionally, he has received Thomas Jefferson medal and James C. Morgan Global Humanitarian Award.

In the year 2000, he was awarded the Padma Shri by the Government of India, which was followed by a Padma Vibhushan in 2008. A biopic on his life is reportedly in the works.