India-US work on state-wise strategy
With a range of investments in recent weeks, Indian companies are on a job creation spree in the US. Mankind Pharma to enter US New Delhi-based Mankind Pharma Ltd is working to make inroads in the US market and plans to file its first set of generic products with the regulator in 2018. Rajeev Juneja, chief executive officer of Mankind Pharma, said: “We will develop innovative products for the US market. We are setting up a manufacturing plant in the US with a total investment of $30 million. We are establishing this US manufacturing organically. "The building setup is ready; however, equipment and utilities are under commissioning” He added that the company is also in the process of getting some of its Indian units approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA). While the company has been successful in the domestic market, which accounts for nearly 90 per cent of its revenue, analysts believe that tapping the US market will be challenging as the company is a late entrant compared to its Indian peers and current market conditions in the US are challenging. Although the company is trying to increase its international presence, the Indian market will be its priority as it aims to be among the top three players in the country.
Lenskart invests $1mn in Ditto
Indian eyewear e-tailer Lenskart has invested $1 million in US-based Ditto, which develops 3D face models for Lenskart's virtual trial service. Lenskart already employs Ditto′s 3D try-on services on its website. With the integration of Ditto, the company will be able to enhance its online engagement with consumers. Peyush Bansal, Founder and CEO of the company, said that further integration will help the company enhance its social aspect where consumers can share how they look with the glasses on with their friends and relatives on social media. He said: "It is sizeable funding for an early stage start-up. We have been evaluating our relationship and now want to take it to the next level. Nobody in the world has a similar technology. "Our focus is to be the largest technology focused eyewear company and make the online experience as much fun as the offline experience." The technology allows the users to see themselves in eyewear in 180-degree angles. The response to this service has been impressive with over 10,000 trials a day.
India-US work on state-wise strategy
India and the US are working out a special strategy to boost state-level engagement to widen bilateral trade and investment ties. The US India Business Council (USIBC) will unveil a State Engagement Task Force (SET) soon to ensure American and Indian companies align their interests with the priorities of state governments in both the countries. USIBC acting president Khush Choksy told Indian media that nominations had been sought from its member companies for this new strategy. As part of SET, preliminary discussions have been held on skill development and entrepreneurship promotion in Nagaland and talks on infrastructure development and job-creation in eastern and north-eastern India have also taken place. He said: “The USIBC wants a win-win outcome for businesses on both the sides. We are supportive of free movement of goods and services.” Similar discussions will also be held with the US state governments to identify priorities on that side.
Wipro sets up California centre
Indian software giant Wipro has launched a new innovation centre in California. The R&D and incubation hub is aimed at showcasing next-generation technologies and solutions and collaborating with technology start-ups in the Silicon Valley, the company said in a statement. The innovation centre will cover artificial intelligence, virtual reality, hyper spectral imaging, machine vision and collaborative robotics and automation. “The main intention behind this is to solve real-world challenges faced by enterprises and to serve as a value creator for technology start-ups and entrepreneurs by helping them sustain and participate in the innovation ecosystem,” Wipro said. The innovation centre also expects to finalise technology research partnerships with leading universities in the US within this financial year. Abidali Z. Neemuchwala, CEO and Executive Director, Wipro, said: “We will work more closely with start-ups, academia and leading technology companies in the Bay area to help our clients achieve their desired digital transformation outcomes.” Wipro said it has invested over $2 billion in the US over the last decade.
Cyient to acquire US design firm
Indian IT major Cyient has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire 100 per cent equity in the US-based B&F Design Inc. The company said the acquisition will be carried out through its step down subsidiary Cyient Defense Services Inc. B&F Design's area of expertise includes design and manufacturing of precision engine assembly equipment, repair tooling, machining of fixtures and gauges, and engine factory modernisation services. This is Cyients sixth acquisition in the last three years as part of its Design Build Maintain strategy. Cyient holds a strong cash position of $155 million and will continue to look for acquisitions that will enable the company to realise its strategy and the goal of industry-leading growth, a statement from Cyient said. Anand Parameswaran, Senior Vice President for Aerospace and Defence, said: “Cyient holds a leadership position in providing engineering services to the Aerospace and Defence market. “This acquisition is a step towards enhancing our Build and Maintain offerings. Through this acquisition, we are better positioned to provide increased value to our customers by undertaking more comprehensive work. We are confident that this acquisition will aid us in achieving our vision.”
Infosys to create 2,000 American jobs
IT software exporter, Infosys, said that it will open a technology and innovation hub in Raleigh, North Carolina, in the US which is expected to hire 2,000 American workers by 2021. The Bengaluru-based company plans to create 10,000 local jobs in the US over two years and said it has already hired close to 1,200 American workers. The new centre, which is to open in early 2018, will occupy 60,000 sq ft and has the capacity to house 500 workers. Infosys plans to hire the first 500 workers in the Raleigh innovation hub within two years, with the remainder to be hired in the state by 2021. Infosys said that new hires at the Raleigh facility would include recent graduates from North Carolina's network of colleges, universities and community colleges, as well as local professionals who will benefit from up-skilling through Infosys' world-class training curriculum. As part of its commitment to growing 2,000 jobs in the state of North Carolina, the company is partnering with the North Carolina Community College System to create a customised program designed to train the workforce of the future.