Indian outsourcing giants to benefit from downturn: Azim Premji

Indian outsourcing giants to benefit from downturn: Azim Premji

London: The turmoil in the financial market is likely to spell good news for the Indian outsourcing companies, as the downturn will compel multinationals to seek further economies for sustenance in these tough times, Wipro Technologies founder Azim Premji has said.

In an interview to the Sunday Times, Premji insisted that “the Indian outsourcing giants will benefit from this downturn, as all multinationals seek further economies."

Premji’s statement comes at a time when the US President Barack Obama has proposed changes in tax laws to curb outsourcing.

Obama proposing change in tax laws of that country had reportedly said, it’s a tax code that says you should pay lower taxes if you create a job in Bangalore, India, than if you create one in Buffalo, New York.

Premji also voiced its concern about the “creeping tide of protectionism" in the west and said that “If we get into protectionism, then the west is going to get a wave of protectionism in response, and that is going to turn back the clock 20 years".

Premji further warned that it will be America and Europe that will suffer, because they will be excluded from the only growth markets left in Asia, Africa and China.

Though the Indian outsourcing industry, is likely to be negatively impacted by the global downturn but factors as English proficient urban workforce and wage, which is still much less than its western counterparts are likely to act as its savior.

Despite the credit crunch across the world, Wipro is expected to keep its growth trajectory consistent. “We will grow this year," Premji told the newspaper, adding that “though it won’t be at the 16% rate of last year. First, there is a significant slowdown taking place, there are budget cuts, deferment of decisions . . ."

He reiterated his belief in the “string of pearl" concept when asked as to whether there will be an Indian IT giant ever, to buy one of its western rivals and said that Wipro has always preferred to buy small.

“What’s the sense in buying a £10 billion company? There’s too much work involved. It’s nice being big, but not critical to strategy," he added.

Premji, has played a pioneering role in the Indian outsourcing industry. After the Indian government exiled IBM in 1977, Wipro first bought a Cincinnati-based computer firm to gain know-how, then built an Indian mini-computer.

Later, when foreign companies returned to India after the Indian government liberalised its foreign policy, Premji sought to rent out his research team’s expertise, rather than lay off its members and thus “Wipro’s outsourcing business was born".