Home Economy Indian ICT company investing $1.8 bn in Australia

Indian ICT company investing $1.8 bn in Australia

By Neena Bhandari, IANS

Melbourne : India based global integrated technology and operations company iGATE Global Solutions Ltd. will be investing $1.8 million and creating up to 40 new jobs in the picturesque and affluent historic gold mining city of Ballarat in Australia.

Ballarat, only 70 minutes drive from Melbourne, has not only been seeking Indian students and migrants, but also investment from Indian companies.

iGATE Corporation CEO Phaneesh Murthy told IANS: “We are optimistic about the Australian market. The initial response to our integrated technology and operations (iTOPS) model is positive, making us comfortable enough to invest in an Australian centre at Ballarat.”

iGATE Global Solutions Ltd. provides cutting-edge business process solutions to major companies and organisations from around the globe, including India, Malaysia, Britain, the US and Canada.

“Ballarat was much more hungry for our business than others. Ballarat’s proximity to Melbourne, the support provided and the fact that it has all the hallmarks of a large city without a large city feel were the clinchers,” said Hari Murthy, member of the board and head of sales and marketing at iGATE Global Solutions.

Ballarat is now part of a global chain of delivery centres for iGATE, including five in India and one each in the US and Europe. The centre in Ballarat will provide the company’s Australian clients a near shore option for delivery of high quality services.

Victorian Minister for Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Theo Theophanous told IANS: “iGate’s entrance into Victoria is another success in the promotion and development of the region, and our ability to attract global investment into the state to drive innovation and create jobs state-wide.”

“Ballarat has become an international investment hub for ICT companies, especially with the introduction of the Ballarat Technology Park, and this is creating jobs and strengthening the local economy,” Theophanous added.

The company’s decision to set up business in Ballarat is seen as a direct result of the Ballarat City Council’s focus on business and investment opportunities from India.

Ballarat City Council CEO Anthony Schinck welcomed the iGATE decision, saying it was further proof that Ballarat’s proactive approach to international investment was successful.

“We are certainly beginning to achieve the business development opportunities that are possible from India and this provides Ballarat with a unique economic competitive edge against any other regional centre in Australia. This investment is resulting in new business outcomes for both the community and our current businesses,” Schinck said.

In November 2007, Ballarat City Council’s director of marketing and business development George Sossi and his team of officials visited iGATE’s main office in Bangalore as part of an investment and trade mission.

Sossi said: “We were impressed with the calibre of the company and its philosophy on staff and customer management. The company has significant potential to increase its business here, which will value-add to other companies and businesses in Ballarat.

“We have identified a number of businesses with a diverse range of investment plans within IT, agribusiness, food processing, engineering and alternative energy technologies in India. We will be inviting these potential business investors to visit Ballarat to progress these opportunities.”

A memorandum of understanding (MoU) is also in the pipeline between the city of Ballarat and the Indian state of Punjab, as well as with its IT development agency, Punjab Infotech.