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Wednesday, May 28, 2003

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Wipro Tech bullish on infrastructure services

Rukmini Priyadarshini


WIPRO Technologies, the IT services arm of Wipro, is bullish about its Technology Infrastructure Services business to boost revenues. The business grew 10 times in the last three years for Wipro and now contributes $44 million, or 8 per cent of the company's revenues.

That growth is nothing compared to what is possible in the coming years, says Mr G. K. Prasanna, Vice-President, TIS. He, however, declined to make any projections.

"Having secured wins in the tens of millions of dollars category, we can now look to the sub-$100 million space. We are in the consideration set, which is an achievement in itself.''

"Monitoring, remote management and onsite management services for the IT infrastructure of corporates is not new. Others have been doing it and doing it well."

"What we are focussed on now is to sell India and Wipro as the destination for these services,'' Mr Prasanna said.

Indian companies have demonstrated their capabilities and are now on the map for larger deals, although the giants in the business - EDS, IBM Global, Accenture etc - are making billion dollar deals.

"Yet, Indian companies offer not just cost savings - which is just the door opener,'' said Mr Prasanna.

"We can offer remote infrastructure management that is cheap and always on. That is the clinching argument.'' WT, which added 8 new clients and earned $11.2 million in the managed services space, also billed 94 unique customers and had 600 people on various engagements for international customers in the space.

WT had strong case studies that it would use to convince customers of the advantages of outsourcing IT infrastructure management to it, Mr Prasanna said. Wipro is managing the IT infrastructure of a UK-based energy utility - the entire distributed computing, servers, networks, firewalls, anti-virus etc, and is responsible for 99.5 per cent uptime for 117 locations.

"The Global Command Centre at Bangalore set up for this client helps us showcase our capabilities in the space," Mr Prasanna said.

"With a multi-site delivery model, we offer both cost savings as well as reduce the country risk to our customers.''

Receptiveness among customers had increased, said Mr Prasanna, adding that with demonstrated capabilities, a truly 24/7 organisation, addressing country risk issues, security issues and internal process strengths, had helped Wipro clinch some interesting wins.

"For customers, even at the existing level of services we can offer cost-savings of 25 per cent," said Mr Prasanna, adding that Wipro offered planning, design and management and auditing of IT infrastructure.

"These are not deals that we have to renegotiate each year. Mostly 10-year deals, IT infrastructure management, projects are also not likely to get the axe due to cost pressures.

That focus on cutting costs could in fact lead more companies to choose India and Wipro for such outsourcing," he said.

Wipro is focussed on competence in this space and "has demonstrated capabilities in such management,'' Mr Prasanna said.

In fact, the company inducted Mr Steve Zucker of EDS as the Chief Executive of Infrastructure services recently.

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