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Sanjay Krishnaa, SVP and Global Head, Communications, and President, APAC

April 04, 2018
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Sanjay Krishnaa, SVP and Global Head, Co...

Sanjay Krishnaa has been associated with Cyient for the past 17 years. He is currently based in Australia and dons two hats at the company: one as Senior Vice President and global head for communications business, and the other as President, Asia-Pacific (APAC) region. In an interview with tele.net, Krishnaa talks about the upcoming trends in the sector as well as the successes and challenges of his professional journey. Excerpts...

What are your current responsibilities at Cyient?

I joined Cyient Limited in Hyderabad late 2000 (erstwhile Infotech Enterprises) and have been associated with Cyient since then. The journey of these 17 years has been very rewarding and gratifying. As the President for the Asia Pacific, I have the fiduciary responsibilities for our businesses in the region. We have 11 offices serving some large customers in the region, and in my role as Senior Vice President, Communications BU, I have the P&L responsibility in managing and growing communication business globally. This includes growing our current markets, looking at new markets for growth, building a strong eco system, partnerships, acquisition and defining strategy for next level growth.

What trends do you foresee in the telecom sector?

The telecom industry is witnessing tremendous technological disruption, which they haven’t witnessed for a long time, I guess. This possibly is the only industry that is witnessing this sort of disruption and the challenging part for CSP’s is to keep up to this pace and still be competitive and be ahead of the game. The increased competition with their peer members and at the same time competing with OTP has become very challenging. What we could see in the near future would be consolidation globally and I won’t be surprised if we see few CSP players in each market than what we see today.

The focus for CSP’s is to upgrade their technologies, keep up to the demand of bandwidth although they don’t make much money out of it these days from B2C. The shift that we could see moving forward will be around focussing more on the enterprise business. This is where we could see CSP’s playing a role like technology companies offering services and solutions around telecommunication and more importantly around new technologies such as Cloud, IOT, SDN etc.

While 5G is still bit far away, the investments around small cell deployment will pick up the pace, similarly the fibre roll out will be their biggest investments now and in coming years.

So it will be very interesting space to watch. I can say that the carriers will play very important than ever before in providing services to almost all industries.

From Cyient’s perspective, we are partners with some of the large CSP’s globally and have been part of their strategy road map. This focus will continue and have made considerable investments in this regard and will continue to invest in building our partnership much stronger.

One of the key areas that we are investing in is around IoT. We have developed an IoT-based tower operations centre solution that enables operators to better manage their passive infrastructure.

We have strong capabilities in the areas of SDN and NFV and have partnerships with technology leaders.

Especially around new technologies such as IOT, SDN, NFV and Cloud we have partnered with some of the key CSP’s globally in investing in the Innovation Lab.

As you know, Cyient is a global leader in planning, designing and building networks and this remains our strong focus as well.

Another area of focus, with the ongoing internet explosion, security is also emerging as a key focus area for carriers. Since consumers and enterprises heavily use internet over Wi-Fi networks, devices or infrastructure could be compromised if we do not have a proper cybersecurity system in place.

What has been your most memorable assignment so far?

There are no one assignment that I can share with you but a satisfying one is to grow an account to become the 2nd largest customer for Cyient. This journey is very gratifying and at the same time it also excites and challenges me to create more value and grow further and also create more such account like this. A memorable moment is always when you please your customers by providing value to them. The way telecom industry dynamics are changing is very challenging. However, these challenges excite me because they demand a different and innovative kind of thought process. We have to constantly look for solutions that will help our clients to compete with their competitors and survive in dynamic times.

What kind of challenges do you have before you?

Embracing technology advancement and building solutions and products there by creating value to CSP’s, is the current challenge that I see but at the same time, it excites me and my team as we have to be smart, innovative and be the differentiator on the space we belong.

What do you see as your main strengths and weaknesses?

I feel that being positive and aggressive are very important to be ahead of the curve. I could be restless at times when things don’t go the way you like.

How would you describe your management style?

The team should have autonomy to operate, we should encourage fresh ideas, however big or small it is, as any good idea can change the way we work, bring innovation in to the play and create value to the organization and to our customers.

Bringing transparency the way we operate internally and externally is very important. I motivate my team to learn and learn more as there is no limit for you to learn, if you stop learning then you stop winning.

What are your personal interests and how do you spend your spare time?

I travel a lot for my business and whenever I get time, I like to spend it with my family. My wife is a housewife and the strongest foundation of our family. She supports me in managing the household affairs. I have two children. My daughter has completed her graduation in business management and is currently working as a management trainee for NBN, a local broadband company in Australia. My son plays cricket for a club in Australia and I spend almost every weekend cheering for him when he plays against other clubs.

I play badminton, tennis and Cricket (often with my son) whenever time permits, besides watching movies.

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