Staff Correspondent

Signs memorandum with the Tamil Nadu Government

CHENNAI: Global computer major Dell has announced that it will set up a manufacturing facility at Sriperumbudur, near here. The memorandum of understanding in this regard has been signed between Dell and the Tamil Nadu Government.

Addressing a press conference here on Thursday, Paul-Henri Ferrand, Vice President (South Asia) of Dell, said the company would be investing $30 million over five years. This would go up to $60 million by the end of ten years. He expected the facility to go on stream to in the first half of 2007. The facility and related operations would be located on a 50-acre land, he added. The facility would directly employ 1,000 people and provide indirect jobs for 4,000 people.

Mr. Ferrand said the upcoming facility would initially focus on production of desktop computers and servers. Over a period it would start manufacturing notebooks and other computer products. At present, nearly 70 per cent of Dell's business in India was accounted for by desktop computers.

Mr. Ferrand said the Chennai plant would be Dell's sixth manufacturing facility in the world and fourth in the Asia Pacific region. Dell has two facilities in China and one in Penang, Malaysia. He said the new facility would allow Dell to reduce delivery time from about 12 to 15 days to 3-4 days.

The Union Minister for Communication and Information Technology, Dayanidhi Maran, said the State Government had allocated 130 acres of land at the Sripermubudur Hi-Tech Park for housing various electronic units. Competitive and conducive environment, availability of skilled labour and port facilities were the key factors that made Dell decide on Chennai as the location for its plant.

Rajan Anandan, Vice-President of India Sales, Dell, said "wherever Dell set up its operation, it contributed great amount to that country's revenue, for example it contributed nearly seven per cent of Malaysia's GDP." He said Dell had grown to a Rs. 1,800 crore company in India over the last six years and was growing at 60 per cent. It had a market share of 46 per cent among large companies with over 1,000 employees.

Tamil Nadu Industries Secretary Shaktikanta Das said Dell setting up its unit in the State would make a significant impact on the overall investment scenario of the State.