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Manzano Steers TCS Through Turbulence, Seeks Growth in Latin America

For Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), an IT services, consulting, and business solutions organization with over 344,000 consultants in 44 countries, the Latin American region is still full of possibility. Two large contracts in 2015 helped cement TCS’ expansion in the region. The company was awarded an end-to-end full services deal by a Latin American bank to transform its IT and business operations. And it was also chosen by another large Latin American bank to completely transform its data center footprint.
Chief Executive Officer and Managing Director, N Chandrasekaran highlighted Latin American growth in his statement on the third quarter earnings. “Our international business has grown smartly in CC terms,” he said, “with North America and Europe leading the way among major markets and Latin America among growth markets.”

TCS Latin America CEO Henry Manzano
TCS Latin America CEO Henry Manzano is optimistic about the region’s business prospects in 2016.
It has not been all smooth sailing, though. TCS has seen some shake-ups in the last year with two top executives departing to join rival Wipro, another Indian-heritage IT consulting company.
Ankur Prakash, former chief operating officer for TCS Latin America, was widely credited with with expanding TCS’ footprint in the region, growing under his leadership from a single delivery center in Guadalajara, Mexico, in 2007 to more than 2,000 employees in Mexico and a widening presence across a range of countries in Latin America at the end of his tenure. He followed the former head of TCS’ business process services unit Abidali Neemuchwala, who also joined Wipro after leaving TCS.
Henry Manzano, CEO of TCS Latin America, is quick to point out that, despite these changes, TCS Latin America reported one of its best quarters of growth at the end of 2015. “We believe that we have a spectacular team and we are growing,” he told Nearshore Americas.
Manzano explained that TCS’ strategy in Latin America over the last five years has focused on very specific accounts in different areas of the market, with a view to building its base in the financial services area. It is also making a push into telecom and retail. “Those are our strongest knowledge areas in TCS globally, so we replicate that in Latin America,” he said. He added that the two large deals, with major banks in Colombia and Peru, have allowed the company to grow and reach its third quarter targets. He emphasized that the strategy was predicated on the notion of being “close to the customer and growing with them.”
Although that strategy has traditionally focused on building relationships locally and regionally with customers that have a Latin American presence, TCS is also setting its sights on nearshore customers in the United States and Canada. “We are looking at both,” said Manzano, “and offering a full-service to them with new technologies to help them compete globally.”
The financial services market is where TCS has its core expertise, and it is targeting that vertical in particular. “We have very important LatAm banks growing in the region,” said Manzano. “Some of them are also trying to go abroad and target markets like the U.S and that allows us to grow with the customers.”
He noted that cloud computing, big data, and analytics are all new technologies that are enabling TCS’ clients to compete in a better position with the global market. Automation is one of TCS’ key services internationally. Its neural-automation platform, “ignio,” has been adopted across a range of North American and global clients in the automotive sector, airline, pharmaceutical and energy industries over the last year. But this approach is not taking center stage in Latin America even though it does form part of the group’s plans. Henry Manzano noted that automation was just one of the technologies driving change for clients in the region.
But while there is growth to be had, there are also significant challenges, most notably the economic instability rocking the region. “We are living in difficult situations,” he said. “All of us are watching very carefully how commodity prices are affecting our economy, and that is very important for Latin America. But we believe that because of that, it will help us, because our customers will be more open to save money.”
TCS has a presence in eight countries in Latin America, with clients across major industries such as telecommunications, financial services, and retail. “We see that we can help them to save money,” said Manzano. “We don’t see really that the economic situation will affect us. We think this is part of the cycle of economy, and we hope that this situation will resolve itself in the next year to 18 months. It is not a permanent situation.”
Henry Manzano indicated that many banks are leaving Latin America and selling their facilities, which is creating opportunities for its local customers who are buying those facilities and expanding across the region.
Looking to the future, TCS is optimistic about 2016 and the opportunities in Latin America. Its two strongest markets, Mexico and Brazil, are likely to continue to be the major markets for the company in the region, but Manzano emphasized that they anticipate growth in other places too, particularly in key verticals like retail, airlines, and financial services.
“Our customers are expanding operations in different countries” said Manzano, “and that is helping us to grow in places like Argentina, Colombia, Peru.”

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Bianca Wright

Nearshore Americas Contributing Editor Bianca Wright has been published in a variety of magazines and online publications in the UK, the US and South Africa, including Global Telecoms Business,, SA Computer Magazine, M-Business,, Business Start-ups, Cosmopolitan and ComputorEdge. She holds a MPhil degree in Journalism from the University of Stellenbosch and a DPhil in Media Studies from Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University.

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