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Wipro founder Azim Premji to retire, son to take over as executive chairman

Wipro Chairman Azim Premji attends the Saudi-India Forum in New Delhi, February 20, 2018. REUTERS/Anushree Fadnavis/Files

BENGALURU (Reuters) - Software services exporter Wipro Ltd said on Thursday founder Azim H Premji would retire as executive chairman and managing director (MD) by the end of July and named Chief Executive Officer Abidali Z Neemuchwala as its new MD.

Azim Premji, India’s second richest man and well-known philanthropist, has led Wipro’s evolution from a vegetable oil company founded in 1946 into a global IT firm.

“It has been a long and satisfying journey for me. As I look into the future, I plan to devote more time to focus on our philanthropic activities,” Azim Premji, who had been at the helm for more than 50 years, said in a statement.

Azim Premji’s son, Rishad Premji, will become executive chairman for a period of five years, Wipro said.

He will stay on as non-executive director, the Bengaluru-based company said here

Wipro, which entered into the IT products business in 1982, caters to some of the world’s biggest banks and healthcare companies, and competes with bigger rivals like Tata Consultancy Services Ltd and Infosys Ltd.

Reporting by Chandini Monnappa in Bengaluru; Editing by Subhranshu Sahu