Cisco to invest ₹400 crore in India

Our Bureau Mumbai | Updated on January 24, 2018

John Chambers (centre), Chairman of Cisco Systems, and Charles Robbins,CEO Designate, with Union Minister for Communications and Information Technology Ravi Shankar Prasad, during a meeting in New Delhi on Thursday. KAMAL NARANG

John Chambers, outgoing CEO of Cisco, gestures as he answers a question from media during a news conference in New Delhi, India, June 18, 2015.   -  Reuters

Company aims to train 1.20 lakh students in networking academies by 2020, says CEO

US-based information technology company Cisco Systems on Thursday said it would invest $20 million (₹127 crore), directly or indirectly, over the next five years in the ‘Cisco Networking Academy’ to train students.

The company will also spend $40 million (₹255 crore) for the next phase of expansion in its India centres by March 2016.

Cisco spends around $1.7 billion every year in India, including $250 million on research and development. However, the country contributes only $1.1 billion to its global revenues of $48.6 billion.

Manufacturing base

To increase revenues from India, the company said it plans to play a big role in helping India become a world leader in manufacturing by using its global supply chain expertise to help build and accelerate the manufacturing ecosystem. John T Chambers, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Cisco, who announced the future plans here, said the expansion of the networking academy will help India increase its pool of highly-skilled technology professionals.

Till now, the academy has trained around 1 lakh students in 198 such academies across the country. It will further train 1.20 lakh students by 2020, he added.

To help accelerate the development of India’s electronics manufacturing ecosystem, Cisco will also organise the ‘Cisco Design and Innovation Conference’ in Bengaluru in February 2016 to bring together over 75 of its key suppliers and partners to collaborate on product development and Internet of Everything (IoE)-enabled supply chain technology.

“Cisco is committed to partnering with the Indian Government to translate the ‘Digital India’ vision into reality. I believe that India’s entrepreneurial spirit, highly-skilled workforce and a supportive government will accelerate the country’s digital transformation,” said Chambers, the outgoing CEO of the company.

Regulatory issues

When asked about the challenges in doing such projects in future and when exactly the company could start manufacturing, he said, “...there is no limitation on products,” but added that the tax systems and the logistics should be set up the right way.

“We have to learn the skills to improve upon a few products, in order to scale up. We will start manufacturing in India within two quarters, once regulatory issues and tax-related corrections are in place,” he added.

However, he did not share or explain the regulatory and tax structure-related changes that the company expects the Government to put in place.

Chambers and Chuck Robbins, the CEO designate of Cisco, also met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Communications and IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, on Thursday, and said that both the meetings were fruitful in terms of Cisco partnering in the Government’s ‘Digital India’ as well as ‘Make in India’, and cyber security projects.

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Published on June 18, 2015
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