HP plant at Sriperumbudur to be operational by August

?TE RAJA SIMHAN Chennai | Updated on July 06, 2020 Published on July 06, 2020

The American IT firm will manufacture desktops and workstations in partnership with Flex

HP (Hewlett Packard), the US-based IT giant and India’s largest computer manufacturer, will go ahead with its plan to manufacture desktops and workstations in partnership with Flex Ltd at Sriperumbudur near Chennai from August. This will significantly boost Tami Nadu’s share in electronic hardware manufacturing.

The geographical advantage of Chennai, which has three major ports, has been a major factor in HP deciding to put up its second manufacturing facility after Pantnagar in Uttarakhand, said sources.

The company, in April, had announced to a wire agency about its plan to start manufacturing in August. But with the coronavirus infection spreading fast in Chennai and the neighbouring districts, including Kancheerpuram (where Sriperumbudur is located), there were apprehensions in the trade that HP may delay its plans.

But an official with HP told BusinessLine: “We are focused on getting this facility [Sriperumbudur] operational by August .” HP has a longstanding and successful relationship with Flex in other parts of the world, he added. The official refused to divulge numbers, citing the confidentiality clause in the agreement with Flex.

Demand for PCs

After Dell, which also has a plant at Sriperumbudur, HP will be the second company to manufacture PCs in Tamil Nadu. This comes in the backdrop of increased demand for PCs due to the Work From Home and online education following the spread of the pandemic.

HP’s competitors, Lenovo and Acer, have manufacturing plants in neighbouring Puducherry.

Having a presence in Chennai has advantages such as proximity to the port to get raw materials from other parts of Asia quickly. It is also near a parts facility in Bengaluru. “This move supports HP’s deep commitment to India, and will position us well to continue meeting customer needs throughout the country,” said the HP official.

The starting of the manufacturing comes at a time when the Tamil Nadu government allowed all industries and export-oriented units in Thiruvallur, Kancheepuram and Chengalpattu (except containment zones) are permitted to function at 100 per cent strength.

HP has been manufacturing PCs at its plant in Pantnagar since 2006. This facility will continue to cater to markets in North India andthe Sriperumbudur plant for South India, said industry sources.

Job opportunities

HP’s facility in Sriperumbudur will create job opportunities in the manufacturing sector. This will also help in improving HP’s operational efficiencies in terms of improving their delivery turnaround time for the trade and consumers in South India, besides helping them save freight cost, they said.

Tamil Nadu ranks second in India in computer, electronics and optical products manufacturing, accounting for 16 per cent of the national production. Computers and peripheral equipment accounted for 62 per cent of the total electronics output in the State, says government data.

Flex has three manufacturing sites in Tamil Nadu. It builds products for domestic and export markets in consumer, power, telecom, computing, automotive and industrial segments.

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Published on July 06, 2020
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