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Old August 12th, 2008, 04:41 PM
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Exclamation Vodafone Director prefers foreign vendors to Indian

Vodafone Director prefers foreign vendors to Indian

Date: Monday, August 11, 2008

Bangalore: Indian IT vendors eying the telecom space are still away from a reason for hope. Telecom sector in India would prefer foreign vendors to their Indian counterparts. Chandra Mohan IT Director, Vodafone Essar said he would choose a foreign vendor instead of an Indian.

"The telecom industry is undergoing changes as fast as never before. So an IT vendor who is eying this industry has to keep a tab on this constant changing scenario, while building the product. The implementation of a new technology product in the industry needs to be done so faster that any delay will result in the product being unsuitable to the constantly changing Industry. And also the product development involves a lot of risk, hence it demands a big investment. When considering all this counts, foreign vendors are better than Indian vendors," he said, while speaking at a session on "Customer insights and expectation", held as part of the second annual NASSCOM Product Conclave.

Last year had seen Vodafone Essar outsourcing all its IT operations deals to IBM India in a five year contract. In the recent past Bharti Airtel had signed a similar deal with IBM. Another foreign firm, which is out-winning domestic players to bag deals in India, is Huawei technologies. The company sold equipment worth $700 million last year and expects to more than double the turnover from India to $1.5 billion this year. The company in April bagged a $500-million order for GSM mobile equipment from Reliance Communications (RCom), the country's largest CDMA player that is shortly rolling out GSM services. The company is also in talks with Aircel (owned by Telekom Malaysia), Vodafone, the Aditya Birla group's Idea Cellular and Tata Teleservices for contracts.

Apart from Chandra Mohan, BR Nath CIO, CGM, SBI; N. Kailash Nathan Sr. VP Titan Industries and RV Balasubrahmanyam Iyer, VP Training-Reliance Digital Retail shared there thoughts at the session.

Kailashy Nathan was somewhat non-committal in his view towards foreign vendors. He says, "Unlike Indian players, foreign players mostly provide packaged software. But physically being nearest will help Indian vendors to provide its customers with timely support services, an advantage the domestic players have."

BR Nath has an interesting take on the IT solutions in the telecom industry. "One should look at a solution oriented plan while building a product, instead of looking at the problem and try to get out of the conundrum. And as far as BFSI segment is concerned, IT vendors, instead of looking at their customers, should look at their customers' customers," he said.

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Last edited by echarcha; August 12th, 2008 at 04:55 PM.
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