N. Rahul

Pharma major Novartis to sign MoU

  • IT Secretary meets CEOs of nearly 25 companies in the US
  • `Cream of the industry evinced interest in locating units here'

    HYDERABAD: The Information Technology (IT) boom is headed towards another major jump with the decision of the State Government to tap Fortune 500 companies for investments here.

    After Microsoft and IBM, which were already grounded here, the Government on Friday gave the go ahead to Novartis to start its operations in IT Enabled Services (ITES). A team of Novartis called on Chief Minister Y. S. Rajasekhara Reddy when it was agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding next Wednesday.

    Novartis, the fourth major pharma company in the world, was invited by the Government to set up the ITES along with R&D facility. IT Secretary K. Ratna Prabha was also in the US a few days ago to negotiate with the CEOs of nearly 25 top IT, ITES and hardware companies. Ms. Prabha told The Hindu that she met the cream of the industry and they evinced interest in locating their units here.

    Hardware sector

    "We are also trying to get an anchor client in the hardware sector in which we could not make a dent. Such a client was important to create a network of ancillaries," she said.

    Ms. Prabha said the State had become the IT destination during the period as seen from the sanctioning of 32 Special Economic Zones (SEZs), the highest in the country.

    Ms. Prabha stoutly denied that the IT industry was being developed without involving the small and medium enterprises (SMEs). In fact, ten million sft of built in area was developed for them at the Hi-TeC city here.