Industry leaders ask government to give a ‘boost’ to attract big technology companies to Mangalore

The information technology sector and industry in general in Mangalore cautiously welcomed the State government’s IT policy — encouraging IT in tier-2 cities — announced at an industry event (BangaloreITE.Biz) in Bangalore on Tuesday.

While technology leaders hoped it would go beyond proclamations on paper, they said getting the industry to look beyond Bangalore at cities such as Mangalore required “a structured approach”.

The IT policy wants to position Bangalore and Karnataka as the preferred global investment destination for the sector. It encourages innovation-based industries, startups, electronic system design and manufacturing (ESDM), animation and graphics, Web and mobile-based creative fields. The government is also set to declare the sector as “essential service”, a move that will protect the industry from bandhs and strikes.

Mohammed Ameen, president, Kanara Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI), said it was important for the industry to stake a claim at the correct time. Tier-2 cities such as Mangalore should speak up now because the industry in places such as Andhra Pradesh was going through challenging times.

He said, of late, some importance was being given to emerging cities such as Mangalore. The chamber had asked the government for a “boost” to encourage the industry to come to tier-2 cities like it did for BPOs. He said, “We hope it is not just on paper.”

Sampath Menon, Managing Director, Callystro, a Mangalore-based startup, said, “The small steps announced now are in the right direction, but it will take many such small steps rather than a one-time policy announcement to get there.”

For Mangalore to become an IT hub, big companies should set up shop here, work on infrastructure, and frequently organise big IT-related events. The stamp duty concession should appeal to big companies.

A single window clearance for the industry would benefit startups, small and big companies in eliminating red tape and improving efficiency.

The National Association of Software and Services Companies (Nasscom), in a press release, said that “the focus on startups and tier 2 cities is particularly welcome as it supports the wave of entrepreneurship and innovation in the country.”

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