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Tuesday, Jan 22, 2002

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TiE to `touch' 10 more centres

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THE Indus Entrepreneurs (TiE), a network of IT professionals in the Silicon Valley, has decided to extend its ``caring touch'' by providing mentoring to ten more centres across the globe.

At an interactive forum aimed at networking IT professionals and companies in Hyderabad here, the Executive Director of TiE-Silicon Valley, Mr Raj Desai, announced that besides the existing 30 centres, it was planned to support ten more centres across the globe.

"These will include a centre at Singapore and Dubai to serve the Far East and West Asia as gateways. The Dubai centre is proposed to be established by March,'' Mr Desai announced at a meeting titled `Entrepreneurship — Next generation'.

"From the initial focus on the Silicon Valley techies, TiE has gradually extended its reach and has become truly global in nature. Apart from being a platform for networking, voluntarism has become a key factor for its growing success. A framework has been put together which is aimed at providing positive leadership through role models, while being socially responsible,'' Mr Desai said.

The Chairman of TiE, Mr Kanwal Rekhi, said this was the best time for entrepreneurs to build companies so that they would be in a position to address the emerging business opportunities in the next 18 months and beyond. "We will help galvanise networking through TiE.''

Mr Rekhi said that it was high time India adopted a trouble-free investment approach or else it would continue to be an "also ran" and would take decades to catch up with countries such as China, Korea and even Thailand. "Recession this time is very minimal with hardly any inflation. And it is in these times people address fundamentals and entrepreneurs emerge.

"These entrepreneurs need not bother about recession and look forward to building successful enterprises so that they are ready when the business gets going again,'' Mr Rekhi said.

A similar view was echoed by Mr Sridar Iyengar, partner in-charge, KPMG.

The Director, Satyam Computer Services and President of TiE, Hyderabad, Mr C. Srini Raju, said: "All of us in the IT sector have been facing a lot of challenges over the past two years. Many entrepreneurs started operations about two years ago in a big way focussing on IT services, products and new technologies; even before they got a chance to establish, they are facing problems."

Mr Iyengar said India had to initiate policies and take decisions to ensure that the gap did not widen between itself and China in attracting investments.

"We should aim at creating long-term values as against short-term priorities. The latter was the case during the dotcom boom. This is a transition phase and a lot more of consolidation will take place in the IT sector.''

Other speakers highlighted experiences from venture funding, difficulties in marketing and challenges for small companies in gathering market intelligence.

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