Financial Daily from THE HINDU group of publications
Wednesday, Jan 07, 2004
HelloSoft draws up $4-m plans for design centre
V. Rishi Kumar
Hyderabad , Jan. 6
HELLOSOFT Inc., the US-based communication software solutions provider, has drawn up plans to expand its Indian research and development (R&D) centre here with expected investments of about $4 million this year and addition of 80 more techies.
The Co-Founder of HelloSoft, Mr Rama Rao Sreeramaneni, told Business Line that the company was working on new areas of wireless solutions that get embedded on chips and provide more convenience for multiple mobile phone applications as also personal digital assistants.
"HelloSoft received funding of $12 million in 2002 from three venture firms and Acer. The company plans to now expand the R&D centre to address 3G and broadband-related applications."
He added: "With revenues of about $6 million last year, we continue to register year-on-year growth of about 50 per cent.
"However, we do not have any plans to take the IPO route now, as we have adequate funds to meet out requirements both for expansion and enhanced marketing.
"With strategic partners like Ericsson, Texas Instruments, Fujitsu, Sharp, we are in the process of developing various solutions for mobile applications that get embedded on chips."
According to him, the company received first round of funds in 2002 from Venrock Associates, an arm of the Rockefeller group, Soffinova Ventures, a French firm, and JumpStartup, a Bangalore-based venture capital firm.
"These fresh investments will enable us to expand the headcount and add more testing equipment and build more products."
HelloSoft is working "from scratch to finish'' in the India centre, he added. This means more investments in building the IP here.
So far the company has eight patents and expects to file for more patents during the year in the wireless applications space including VoIP.
As against two chips required for digital signal processing solutions and microprocessors, HelloSoft is able to load them on one chip.
After ZSP, a technology solutions provider, was acquired by LSI Logic in 1999, the software unit was spun off as HelloSoft and created to address wireless applications.
"By developing products with strategic partners, we will be able to get into a different league once we generate revenues for larger volumes," he said.
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