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Robert Bosch picks Coimbatore

Our Bureau

Drawn to city's talent pool; second centre for risk mitigation


BOSCHSPEAK: Dr Walter Grote, Managing Director, Robert Bosch India Ltd, addressing a press conference in Coimbatore on Thursday. — K. Ananthan

Coimbatore , May 4

Impressed with the talent pool available in Coimbatore and as part of its `risk mitigation' strategy, Robert Bosch India Ltd (RBIL) has decided to open a centre in the city.

The centre, which is expected to start operations from July 1 in a rented premises on the city's outskirts, would initially have capacity of 125 associates and this would be ramped up to about 900 within a year, according to Dr Walter Grote, Managing Director, RBIL, Bangalore — a wholly-owned subsidiary of Robert Bosch GmbH of Germany.

Speaking to presspersons in Coimbatore on Thursday, Dr Grote said RBIL provided engineering and non-engineering services to the Bosch group such as Electronic Control Unit Development for automotive, industrial, consumer goods and building technology. It was also involved in IT services, process consulting, mechanical engineering, shared services accounting and translation/documentation. It has four units in Bangalore, which is the company's largest development centre outside Germany with an employee strength of more than 3,000.

Dr Arup Ray, Divisional Manager, said that the company wants the Coimbatore centre to focus on industrial automation as the city is a good base for industrial systems. It would also work on mechanical engineering and design, and the services sector, followed by software development.

On R&D investment Mr R. Aravind, Divisional Manager, said the company had invested Rs 100 crore, with Rs 40 crore invested last year. During January-December 2005 RBIL's turnover was Rs 390 crore.

Talented pool

Replying to a question, he said that the infrastructure problems in Bangalore were "well known and they are limiting us somehow in growth".

It chose Coimbatore for its talented pool of engineers, he said.

The company also wanted to evolve a `risk mitigation strategy' as it planned to have 6,000 employees by 2010 to deliver software and engineering and non-engineering services to the Bosch group, and for this it needed a second location.

He expected the Coimbatore centre to contribute significantly to RBIL's turnover and said its headcount was likely to touch 2,500 by 2010.

The Coimbatore centre, like the Bangalore centre, would cater to Indian, Chinese and Brazilian markets, he said.

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