IBM UK appoints Sreeram Visvanathan as new CEO

15 September 2020 2 min. read
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Sreeram Visvanathan has become IBM’s Chief Executive Officer in the UK and Ireland. He succeeds Bill Kelleher, who was named the firm’s national Chairman following three years as CEO.

The new CEO has accrued almost two decades of experience at IBM, having joined the firm in 2002, when it bought up PwC’s global consulting practice. In the wake of the Enron scandal, as the surviving Big Four offloaded their advisory wings, the $3.5 billion deal created a new global business unit, IBM Business Consulting Services, comprising more than 60,000 consulting professionals. The former PwC Principal Consultant quickly flourished at IBM, with Visvanathan becoming a Partner soon after his arrival.

Visvanathan since held a string of global senior roles with IBM, including Managing Partner for IBM Business Service’s global public sector practice, Global Managing Director for Government, and most recently Global Managing Director in IBM’s government, healthcare and life sciences division.

In this role, Visvanathan led a team of Managing Directors and senior executives in the development of industry strategies, in creating and deploying industry solutions that leveraged the strength of IBM across multiple technology and IT Services domains.

Sreeram Visvanathan, CEO, IBM UK

Marta Martinez Alonso, General Manager of IBM Europe, Middle East and Africa, said, “Sreeram is a remarkable leader who for the last five years has led our global Public Sector team, covering Government, Healthcare, Life Sciences and Education industries, and together with his team, has delivered tremendous value to our clients.”

Outgoing UK CEO Kelleher, who led UK and Ireland business operations since mid-2017, took up the role of Chairman for the UK and Ireland at the start of September. In his new position, Kelleher will continue to strengthen relationships with key private and public sector clients to advance IBM’s contribution to the national agenda.

Martinez Alonso: “I would like to thank Bill [Kelleher] for his leadership in the UK over the last three years.”

Visvanathan leads IBM's entire operations in the UK, responsible for business operations, driving revenue growth, client satisfaction, and employee engagement.

“We are at a pivotal point in shaping the future of our industry,” Visvanathan said of his new challenge. “The current global crisis is accelerating disruption and the need for digital transformation at scale and pace. It is a real privilege to be appointed into this role and I am personally excited to be returning to the UK. Through my existing work with clients in the UK Public Sector, I am familiar with the market and look forward to making new connections as we work together to continue to navigate the global pandemic.”

Earlier in 2020, the IBM Board of Directors elected Arvind Krishna as the company’s global CEO. Krishna was previously IBM Senior Vice President for Cloud and Cognitive Software, and was a principal architect of the company's acquisition of Red Hat.