ZTE to expand R&D operations in India

By : |December 2, 2008 0

BANGALORE, INDIA: Gone are the times when the ‘Made in China’ brand was considered substandard and today more and more classical companies are shifting their focus to China and other countries in the East, says Dr. D.K.Ghosh, chairman and managing director, ZTE Telecom India Pvt Ltd.

Dr. Ghosh says that it is the strength of the research and development that enabled ZTE, the global provider of telecommunications equipment and network solutions, to bring out cheap products in the global market without compromising on the quality.

He said the company is further strengthening its R&D Centre in Bangalore. A company that thinks futuristic has to invest a lot in the ‘brain power’ sector to compete in the global market.

Currently ZTE India has a 1600-strong workforce and some more people will be recruited in the near future in the R&D wing.

Ten percent of the global revenue of ZTE comes from India, whereas China contributes 30 per cent. “We want to step out to the world and get a due share in the global market,” Ghosh said while interacting with a select group of media in Bangalore on Tuesday. He said the core strength of the company is its R&D initiatives.

China-based ZTE has 16 R&D centers of which 7 are outside China, including the US, Sweden, France, India and Pakistan.

Nowadays companies develop products that are market-driven, and hence R&D assumes greater significance, according to Ghosh.

“Fourteen per cent of our staff are in R&D and 10 per cent of the company’s global revenue is dedicated for R&D,” said Ghosh.

It has around 12,000 core patents in hand, including the ones in next generation network (NGN) and Wi-Max.

“The R&D in India will have a special focus on color ring back tone (CRBT) service,” said Ding Kun, director, ZTE India R&D Centre.

It would also give importance to other value-added services, including data and content solutions, voice solutions, messaging solutions and open platform. It would also work on VOT (Vote on Telephone) for the Indian market. This is aimed at viewers’ vote for TV programmes.

However, ZTE is not very keen about strengthening the manufacturing facility of the company in India, though it has a manufacturing unit in Manesar, Gurgaon, as it feels that importing is economically more viable.

ZTE says it has played a pivotal role in the Indian telecommunication revolution by successfully executing numerous projects across different operators and technologies in a short span of over nine years.

The sales revenue of the company from India rocketed to US$ 750 million in 2008 up from US $100 million in 2004. Talking about the hype over 3G, Ghosh said, “3G service should also focus on rural areas, which comprise 72 per cent of the population of the country. As in the case of handsets, services should also be economically affordable to the rural folk. Only then we can say that 3G has arrived.”

He said ZTE is working with BSNL in the broadband segment, with special focus on the rural population. Ghosh also asserted that the company would not stop its development initiatives in the country in the backdrop of the recent terrorist attack in Mumbai.

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