Beijing: In a path-breaking initiative, top five Indian IT companies have for the first time formed a consortium to break into the highly-regulated Chinese IT market and to win big-ticket projects planned by China’s southwest Guizhou province, which includes a major cloud-based data centre.
TCS, Infosys, Wipro, Tech Mahindra and NIIT have formed the consortium on an experimental basis under an initiative of the Confederation of Indian Industry (CII) Shanghai, which has signed an MoU with Guizhou province, located near Shanghai.
The initiative came as the Guizhou government approached the NIIT and the CII to help it in its massive infrastructure development plan which included setting up a big cloud-based data centre, Mr Prakash Menon, Shanghai-based president of the NIIT, said. Mr Menon is also the co-chair of CII-sponsored India Business Forum.
This is a first time that Indian IT majors, who have struggled in the highly-regulated Chinese market des-pite India’s push to China to open up, have joined hands for Chinese projects.
India has consistently asked China to open up its market for IT and pharmaceuticals — two of India’s most successful export ventures — as a means to address the trade deficit surpassing $40 billion out of a total bilateral trade volume of $70 billion last year.
TCS China president Sujit Chatterjee said it is a new beginning as it’s the first time a Chinese provi-nce has sought Indian IT sector’s help for its infrastructure development. Despite being leaders, Indian IT firms have struggled over the years in China as businesses are mainly garnered by global companies such as IBM, in association with local firms.
He, however, cautioned that this was a regional initiative confined to Guizhou province. “This group needs to stick together but the moment someone bypa-sses it, it will collapse.”
Asked how the five would split the business in a competitive sphere, Chatterjee, whose company has made a much bigger mark in China compared to other Indian IT firms, said the consortium is formed with an understanding that project allocation will be based on strength and past record of firms....