Andhra Pradesh is launching a drive to lure US industry
players, who are facing cost-runs due to a sectoral slowdown,
into relocating their operations to its capital Hyderabad.
some months agonising over spending cutbacks and layoffs
in the US, which sent ripples of worries down the tech
community, Hyderabads bureaucrats have begun smelling
an opportunity in troubled waters the process that
has been promptly imitated by Karnataka and Tamil Nadu.
gleefully point to more than 30,000-strong army of software
engineers, and the low cost of labour and real estate
as a crowd-puller to Cyberabad, which already has
some 700-odd software firms, including the whos
who of global markets. Adding another value to the city,
the state has unveiled a friendly policy, ICT- 2002, which
offers several incentives for those who set up operations
centreThe city has become a favourite destination for many multinational
corporations (MNCs), including Oracle, GE, American Express
and Motorola. It is all because of a businesslike, long-term
approach to the public policy and the long-term vision
of Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu,
who has become a darling of sort for Western governments
and corporations. Naidu has emerged in their eyes as one
of the most promising local leaders not just in India
but also in the developing world.
state says that programmers can be hired in Hyderabad
for as low as $200 a month and quality office space can
be leased at $0.20 to $1 per sq ft per month. In the US,
entry-level costs would be at least 10 times that amount.
czar Bill Gates recent pledge to invest $100 million
in its Indian Development Centre, Hyderabad, is a good
sign for the southern Indian state. Its expansion plans
have further encouraged the states efforts to draw
more MNCs and private Indian companies. Microsoft IDC
currently plans to double the size of its centre, adding
some 300 employees. It has already invested $50 million
for its centre last year.
resultsHyderabads bureaucrats have every reason to feel
happy about the developments taking place in the state.
First, it was the increasing investments by IT firms.
Second, it was the overwhelming response to the recently
concluded Confederation of Indian Industrys ninth
Partnership Summit-2002, which saw 800 participants from
23 nations, followed by the 32nd National Games-2002.
The growing awareness of Hyderabad as a city as a cost-effective
centre is the other milestone.
state is now focusing on its ongoing event, Gitex-2003,
which is being held here in collaboration with the Dubai
World Trade Centre (from 22 to 24 January 2003). Several
IT companies from across the world are attending the meet,
apart from local players.
the government is very optimistic about the event and
IT growth. STPI Hyderabad centre director M Vijay Kumar
says it is getting more enquiries from foreign technology
companies for setting up their operations in Hyderabad.
using cost as a big draw, Hyderabads officials are
keen to show that the city is no longer an intellectual
sweatshop, and its quality of work matches
the best in the world. For instance, .Net developed at
Microsoft IDC has received excellent response internationally.
The entire credit goes to Srini Koppulu, managing director,
Microsoft IDC, and his team.
has chip-designing, hardware manufacturing, networking
product, semiconductor, ERP solution provider and software
development centres, says J Satyanarayana, IT secretary,
adding that the city also was home to several companies
in the world that qualified for Level 5, the highest of
the SEI-CMM model, which studies software process. The
Software Engineering Institute-Capability Maturity Model
(SEI-CMM) is a US-based framework similar to Europes
ISO norms, and is used to rate firms on a scale of one
Kumar says IT investments are on the rise in Hyderabad.
According to him, up to March 1999, Hyderabad received
Rs 421 crore; Rs 1436 crore (up to March 2000); Rs 2324
crore (up to March 2001); Rs 2637 crore (up to March 2002).
success has made him a hit for the last six years at World
Economic Forum meetings in Davos, Switzerland, and elsewhere,
where he has moderated panels and been praised as an example
for other leaders of poor regions.
state has so far conducted roadshows in the US, Singapore
and Dubai to promote Andhra Pradesh as an IT destination.
Wait and watch this space.