Software AG’s new CEO urges CIOs to drive digital transformations

Sanjay Brahmawar discusses why digital transformation is a career-defining opportunity for CIOs and encourages IT leaders to experiment to stay ahead of the competition.

Software AG’s new CEO urges CIOs to drive digital transformations
Software AG

Sanjay Brahmawar spent his first six weeks as CEO of Software AG touring the world to meet colleagues and customers. What he saw convinced him the company’s core integration capabilities are key to enterprise digital transformation. On his way from Sydney, Australia, to the company’s headquarters in Darmstadt, Germany, he stopped in Paris, where CIO.com caught up with him.  

In the following discussion, edited for publication, Brahmawar talks about why digital transformation is a career-defining opportunity for CIOs, what skills liberal arts graduates can bring to software development, and why one of the hottest internet searches for Software AG is for its Bangalore office address.

CIO.com: When Software AG was founded, its name said what it did. What business is it in today?

Sanjay Brahmawar: It’s interesting you said when Software AG was founded because before I started I went to meet our founder, Dr. Schnell, who is 80 years old now, and he was reminiscing about how when he started the business, and he told me, ‘In 1969, Sanjay, nobody knew what software was, it was all hardware,' and he decided to go where the market was, which was in the U.S., and he was there, driving around going to companies and talking to them about software. … I think there’s a lot of heritage and a lot of pride we can have in where we started from. I mean, how many companies that started in 1969 working in software are still alive? There’s none, literally. And we are alive because we have a foundation that has a 33 percent stake, and has obviously protected us in some ways, but also the fact that we have been able to reinvent ourselves.

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