ABB to invest $100 million in India

Bangalore: The Swiss-Swedish engineering company ABB will invest $100 million in India over a period of three years for setting up a global engineering centre in Bangalore and expansion of its corporate research centre. ABB's global chief executive officer-designate, Fred Kindle, told newspersons that the investment will be from 2004 to 2006.

"ABB considers India as a high priority country and is committed to expanding its activities here," Kindle said. He said India was one of the fastest growing markets for ABB and hence it wants to expand its manufacturing capacity to take advantage of the potential. Kindle is visiting India for the first time since he was nominated as the CEO-designate of the global engineering giant. He will assume office on January 1, 2005.

Kindle said the engineering centre would initially target a phased build-up to around 500 man-years of engineering and systems support to other ABB group operations. The research centre's strength will be expanded to around 500 over the next two years. It currently employs 100 domain experts, he added.

On the issue of shifting of jobs to India, Kindle said that the company views it as an issue of cost migration which has become a necessity for ABB. "There will be increasing cost migration from the West to countries such as India," he said.

ABB India's vice-chairman, managing director and country manager, Ravi Uppal, said the investment would be equally distributed towards projects, products and services. "All these are poised for equal growth," Uppal said.