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Cisco plans $50-m R&D campus

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Mr Kiran Karnik, President, Nasscom, and Mr John T Chambers, President and Chief Executive Officer, Cisco Systems, at a Nasscom forum in Bangalore on Friday. - - K. Murali Kumar

Bangalore , Oct 21

ON the last leg of his three-day India tour, the President and CEO of Cisco Systems, Mr John Chambers, announced plans to invest $50 million in a new integrated research and development campus in Bangalore which will also house its local sales and customer support teams.

The Friday's announcement was in addition to the $1.1 billion that Cisco plans to spend over the next three years to expand its operations in India and to fund local start-ups.

"India has been and continues to be a strategic market for Cisco both in terms of business opportunities and as a base for outstanding engineering talent. With the launch of our new campus in Bangalore today, Cisco will be well placed to continue building our presence in India as a critical part of our R&D efforts and the domestic market for networking products and solutions continues to expand," Mr Chambers said.

When completed by June 2007, the Bangalore R&D centre will house about 3,000 engineers in Phase I. "This R&D Centre will be the largest site for Cisco outside the US," Mr Chambers told a press conference adding the Bangalore centre will be an extension of the San Jose R&D team.

Cisco has a 1,400-strong R&D team in India, which will be tripled over the next three years, he said. About 4,200 engineers work for Cisco with seven key partners in India including IT majors such as Infosys, Wipro, and Satyam.

Despite the increase in its own R&D investments in India to the tune of $750 million, Cisco would not cut down on its R&D outsourcing efforts with local partners, Mr Chambers said. "In terms of R&D efforts, India will grow faster in absolute numbers compared to the US," he added.

India, according to Mr Chambers, may emerge a bigger market than China for Cisco in the next three to five years. Cisco has grown by over 50 per cent in the last two years and may grow by over 30 per cent in the next three to five years, Mr Chambers said.

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