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CMC plans to bid for US, Canadian census projects

Our Bureau

New Delhi , May 28

CMC Ltd plans to bid for multi-million dollar IT implementation for the census projects of the US and Canadian governments.

The company's Managing Director and Chief Operating Officer, Mr R. Ramanan, said this while announcing the successful completion of census 2001 project for the Office of Registrar General of India. Additionally, the Tata-owned company plans to hire 400-500 people in fiscal 2004-2005.

For the US project, CMC is in the process of identifying certain US partners. Declining to name the companies, Mr Ramanan said the companies were in the area of image processing and documentation. The company plans to bid for certain parts of project including system integration component, software customisation and development of tools.

In Canada, the census survey is already on. Though CMC did not bid for the project, it is looking at grabbing some areas of the project together with those who had got the tenders.

The Indian project, worth around Rs 24 crore, involved processing of 228 million forms which were in 17 languages. It was completed five months ahead of the project deadline, said Ramanan.

The company used Intelligent Character Recognition Technology (ICR) of the Israel-based Top Image Systems and scanners of Kodak Ltd. CMC's work involved development, customisation and tuning of ICR software and complete scanning and processing operations at 15 RGI centres across the country.

Listing CMC's other international projects, Mr Ramanan said, "We are providing solutions to a stock exchange in Kuwait, police department in Kenya and ticketing system of Railways in Syria."

CMC's overseas operations contributed 18 per cent of its total revenue last year and the company has set a target to increase it to 30 per cent over a couple of years.

Asked about the status of CMC after the TCS float, Mr Ramanan said, "There are two options — it either remain a separate entity or becomes a part of the company."

At present, it is setting up a development centre in Kolkata and is expanding its centre in Hyderabad. The company has over 3,500 employees, 180 services locations and 18 development centres in the country.

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