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Economic crisis may last over 18 months: Murthy

February 12, 2009 14:13 IST

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IT major Infosys Technologies said on Thursday it has extended the training period for people on the "bench" to 29 weeks from the present 16 weeks because of the ongoing global economic recession.

"We are looking at better training in these times. We have increased the training period from 16 weeks to 29 weeks," Infosys [Get Quote] Chairman and chief mentor N R Narayana Murthy said. Murthy was in Mumbai to participate in the day two proceedings of the three-day NASSCOM summit.

The Bangalore-headquartered firm has a cash balance of $ 2 billion and can survive for one more year without any revenue, he said. "Of course, it (zero revenue) is not going to happen."

Murthy equated the present economic crisis in the US, the world's largest economy, to the Great Depression of 1929 in that country. "The present crisis in the US reminds me of the 1929 depression. More signals are emanating of the 1929 depression than the 70s' one. I have a suspicion that it (the present crisis) could be a longer one," he said.

A recovery from the present crisis may take longer than 18 months, he said.

For IT companies to come out of this crisis, senior managements would have to take salary cuts, he said. During the tech bubble between 1999-2002, Infosys top management went for salary cuts and honoured the 1,600 appointment letters it had sent out, the IT czar said. "It created a tremendous goodwill," he added.



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