CMA CGM hires driver of digitization strategy

CMA CGM announced Friday it has recruited a leader to execute its digitization and technology strategy.

Nicolas Sekkaki has served as the chairman and CEO of IBM France since 2015. The CMA CGM Group has hired him as its executive vice president of IT, digital and transformation.

CMA CGM said in the announcement that Sekkaki was brought on to accelerate the implementation of its “digital and technological ambitions.”

“Digitization is at the heart of the CMA CGM Group’s development strategy: a driver for growth, differentiation and performance,” CMA CGM said. “A number of initiatives have already been taken to give the group’s customers access to the world’s most innovative technologies in the fields of blockchain, artificial intelligence and internet of things.

“In order to accelerate the industry’s digital transformation, the CMA CGM Group is recruiting the world’s best experts in the sector,” it said.

In addition to Sekkaki, CMA CGM announced Friday that it had hired Padmaraja Dipankar to serve as the group’s chief digital officer.

Currently the vice president of intelligent operations and innovation at Accenture, Dipankar will be tasked with leading CMA CGM digital transformation projects and fostering partnerships with external companies.

CMA CGM employee Michel Foulon, “with his track record and extensive experience within the group,” will lead IT operations, the company said.

Friday’s announcement made no mention of IT problems caused this week by the ransomware attack reported Monday.

CMA CGM’s most recent statement on the attack was issued Wednesday, when the French container carrier said it suspected a data breach and was “doing everything possible to assess its potential volume and nature.”

“Ragnar Locker” informed CMA CGM on Monday that its data had been encrypted and sensitive private information stolen. The ransom demand read, “There is ONLY ONE possible way to get back your files — contact us via LIVE CHAT and pay for the special DECRYPTION KEY!”

Sekkaki joined IBM in 1991 and his career took him to New York, London and France, where he was appointed general manager of global technology services in 2006. He left IBM in 2010 to serve as SAP’s managing director in France and North Africa but returned in 2012 as vice president of the system and technology group. He was promoted to CEO of IBM France in 2015.

Dipankar joined WNS Global Services as its head of digital transformation and business process excellence in 2006. In 2012, he became vice president of intelligent operations and innovation for Accenture in Barcelona, Spain.