Johnson Controls
Vijay Sankaran

Johnson Controls mandates new CTO with OpenBlue digital platform expansion

May 13, 2021
The company's newly appointed Chief Technology Officer, Vijay Sankaran, is charged with accelerating Johnson Controls' momentum in integrated digital technology innovation for smart, healthy and sustainable buildings.

Johnson Controls (NYSE: JCI) on May 11 announced the appointment of Vijay Sankaran as vice president and chief technology officer, a new role the company says is aimed at accelerating product software engineering development and expanding customer solutions through its OpenBlue digital platform.

According to a press release, Sankaran has held leadership roles in technology transformation across a spectrum of industries, and most recently was chief information officer and head of innovation at TD Ameritrade, with responsibility for digital strategy, customer platforms, software engineering, technology operations, cybersecurity, data management and analytics, and enterprise innovation.

"Vijay brings a wealth of strategic software experience to Johnson Controls and is ideally positioned to strengthen our solutions and market competitiveness through world class software engineering," said George Oliver, Johnson Controls chairman and chief executive officer. "In this new, enterprise-wide chief technology officer role, Vijay and the software engineering team will accelerate our innovation, solve for unique customer outcomes and deliver for our customers on the key secular trends of sustainability, energy efficiency, and healthy, safe and connected smart buildings."

Sankaran reports to Oliver, with software engineering team members from across Johnson Controls' global portfolio reporting to his newly created organization. The company said Sankaran's team will accelerate and unify the product software engineering development efforts creating common software architecture to further drive the enterprise software technology strategy.

"Vijay's role as CTO will be pivotal in driving continued growth and expansion for our OpenBlue digital platform as all of the elements of a building's operational technology become connected," said Mike Ellis, chief customer and digital officer for Johnson Controls. "Through OpenBlue, that connectivity enables us to leverage machine learning and artificial intelligence, as well as edge computing technologies, to predict patterns and trends, and provide positive customer outcomes for sustainability, energy efficiency, security and healthy building environments."

Prior to working at TD Ameritrade, Sankaran held executive roles at Ford Motor Company from 2001 to 2013, including IT Chief Technology Officer, Director of Application Development, as well as leadership roles in architecture, emerging technologies, data and analytics, and enterprise transformation programs. He holds a B.S. in Mathematics and Computer Science from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and an M.B.A. at Duke University Fuqua School of Business.

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