Chennai: International defence major, the Thales group opened a $1.3 million software centre here, which will be used for global system development and as a export hub.
"'Thales Software India (TSI) has invested 1 million euros in developing the Chennai facility and hopes to triple this investment in the coming years and employ a thousand software engineers here by 2010," said Jean Paul Lepeytre, senior vice president for the Thales security services and services divisions.
Thales officials said that TSI already generates revenue of over $400 million from its operations and hopes to increase this in the coming years with export of software systems in 50 and more countries.
The security and services division will form the base for the development centre of the entire group in Chennai, officials said.
'Our Chennai centre will provide the domain specific expertise for all our world operations and anything TSI does here will be exported and available in our products elsewhere,' Francois Dupont, country director Thales, told reporters.
Thales (formerly Thomson Components and Thomson CSF) has been a leading global electronics and systems group for 37 years and caters to defence, aerospace and security markets worldwide.
Five Scorpene submarines, signed for by the Indian Navy, are being fitted with Thales systems, along with fire control systems for the new batch of T90S tanks purchased from Russia.
Thales is also supplying the in-flight entertainment systems for aircraft ordered by Indian Airlines, Air India and Kingfisher Airlines.