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Kyndryl Taps Former IBM Executive Harsh Chugh For COO Role

Kyndryl’s COO announcement comes shortly after many IBM employees updated their social media accounts on Sept. 1 to say they are now Kyndryl employees. Some employees have also been using Kyndryl.com email addresses.

Kyndryl, the upcoming spin-off of IBM’s managed infrastructure services business, has named former IBM vice president and 20-year engineering and finance expert Harsh Chugh its chief operations officer.

Chugh comes to Kyndryl from cloud-based benefits administration technology provider PlanSource.

“Harsh Chugh is (an) expert in delivering operational excellence, in building teams that get great results and in deploying the best talent for critical projects,” Kyndryl CEO Martin Schroeter said in a statement Wednesday. “I am delighted Harsh will direct our operations and help Kyndryl advance the vital systems that power progress for our customers.”

[RELATED: IBM Spin-Off Kyndryl Launches 6 Managed Services Practices As Part Of Global Operating Model]

CRN has reached out to Chugh for comment. Kyndryl declined a CRN request for an interview with Chugh.

Brandon Harris, modern data center vice president at New York-based IBM partner LogicalisUS, told CRN that his company plans to continue to work with Kyndryl on managed infrastructure-related work after the split.

“I see it as a win/win for the two companies as it allows each to focus on what they are good at,” Harris said in an email. “At this point I do not really see any downside to this split and hope to continue to have strong relationships with both companies.”

Kyndryl’s COO announcement comes shortly after many IBM employees updated their social media accounts on Sept. 1 to say they are now Kyndryl employees. Some employees have also been using Kyndryl.com email addresses.

A Kyndryl spokesperson last week told CRN in an email that “as of Sept. 1 Kyndryl has assumed operational control of our business within IBM. We will use this time to continue to test systems and prepare to become a stand-alone, publicly-traded company in the fourth quarter. As we move forward, we are committed to establishing a distinctive organization and culture – flatter, faster and more focused.”

The 90,000-person company is still expected to separate from IBM and become an independent public company by the end of 2021, according to Wednesday’s statement.

Chugh has worked at Orlando, Fla.-based PlanSource for more than a year, according to his LinkedIn.

He ran PlanSource’s finance, legal and business applications divisions and outsourced some of the company’s key product-related service delivery through partnerships with industry leaders in benefits processing, according to the Kyndryl statement.

Prior to PlanSource, he spent more than 17 years at IBM, leaving in May 2020 with the title of vice president and functional COO of global markets, according to his LinkedIn. He joined the Armonk, N.Y.-based tech giant in 2002 as a senior consultant.

Chugh joins an executive team that includes spin-off whiz David Wyshner and Boston-based financial services firm State Street’s former chief information officer, Antoine Shagoury.

Kyndryl will have six global managed services practices: cloud; digital workplace; security and resiliency; network and edge; core enterprise and zCloud; and applications, data and artificial intelligence (AI). Kyndryl will also offer an advisory and implementation services practice to advise customers on digital environments and advanced technology adoption and integration.

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