Cerebra to take on Taiwan’s PC makers

By : |November 22, 2000 0

YP Rajesh

BANGALORE: Indian computer maker Cerebra Integrated Technologies Ltd. said on
Tuesday it will soon challenge Taiwan’s computer makers in the emerging global
markets which they dominate.

"We aim to do a hell a lot of exports in the near future," said V
Ranganathan. "We will compete (with Taiwan) on quality as well as
pricing."

                                 

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Cerebra, launched in 1992, and based in Bangalore, is among a handful of
Indian companies that make and sell computers and allied products under its own
brand name.

India’s hardware sector was better placed than Taiwan’s as it had a large
English-speaking workforce and labor costs were about a quarter of those in
Taiwan, Ranganathan told Reuters.

"A production activity person costs about $500 or $600 a month in Taiwan
while it is $100-$150 here."

Ranganathan said Cerebra had started exporting small volumes of its personal
computers, servers and laptop computers to South Africa, Rwanda and Nepal.

"Serious negotiations are on in Sri Lanka and the first shipment should
take place by the end of this year. We also plan to enter into the Middle East,
China and Taiwan itself," he said.

Ranganathan said Cerebra’s branding and marketing efforts over the last two
years were now paying off and the firm hopes to post sales of Rs 1.12 billion
($24 million) during fiscal 2000-01, compared to Rs 300 million the previous
year.

Growth higher
"Our growth has always been higher than that of the industry average. We
hope to grow over 200 per cent in the next two years," he said.

Cerebra, which is listed on the Bangalore Stock Exchange, expects to list on
the main Bombay Stock Exchange in December, Ranganathan said.

Unbridled Internet growth has fuelled a boom in India’s personal computer
market, which is equally shared by global brands, domestic brands and unbranded
products assembled locally.

Market research firm IDC has forecast personal computer sales to grow 47 per
cent annually over the next four years from 1.15 million units in the fiscal
year to March 2000.

Cerebra made a foray into software services in the current fiscal and set up
a software business unit, Ranganathan said.

Revenue from the software business would account for 40 per cent of total
revenues during 2001-02, from 10 to 15 per cent the previous year, he said.

Software division chief executive Sriram Mahalingam said Cerebra would focus
on financial services, e-business software and manufacturing.

"We have about 75 people who are catering to our five clients," he
said.

(C) Reuters Limited 2000.

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