Case | HBS Case Collection | December 2006 (Revised January 2007)

Infosys in India: Building a Software Giant in a Corrupt Environment

by Rawi E. Abdelal, Rafael M. Di Tella and Prabakar (PK) Kothandaraman

Abstract

Shortly after Infosys was founded in 1981, its managers faced a major turning point when they made a decision to operate without giving in to the petty corruption rife in the Indian economy. Within just a few years, that decision had truly defined the company. Over the next 25 years, Infosys managers went to extraordinary lengths to avoid even the most modest of practices that they considered inappropriate. Explores the practices and methods that Infosys adopted instead, considers their costs, benefits, and generalizability, and contextualizes the problem within Indian political and economic institutions that continue to evolve.

Keywords: History; Management Style; Moral Sensibility; Policy; Business and Government Relations; Decisions; Business Growth and Maturation; Situation or Environment; Crime and Corruption; Business Strategy; Information Technology Industry; Computer Industry; India;

Citation:

Abdelal, Rawi E., Rafael M. Di Tella, and Prabakar (PK) Kothandaraman. "Infosys in India: Building a Software Giant in a Corrupt Environment." Harvard Business School Case 707-030, December 2006. (Revised January 2007.)