Mumbai: Sterlite Technologies Ltd, a telecom infrastructure and solutions company, on Thursday announced several initiatives to strengthen its Digital India vision at an event in Aurangabad.

Among these, the company announced an annual seed fund of $100,000 to strengthen India’s investments in broadband technology research, by investing in Indian start-ups, working on innovative broadband deployment technologies.

The company also inaugurated its centre of excellence (CoE) spanning 35,000 sq. ft, adjoining Sterlite’s 20 million km optical fibre factory in Aurangabad. The company said that the CoE is the only such facility in India dedicated to research and development of fibre-optic broadband technologies.

Further, Sterlite Technologies also signed agreements on collaborative research in ultra-high speed broadband with the Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs) of Madras and Kanpur on Thursday, and said it would set up a five-member panel comprising broadband experts who would jointly advise on grants and fellowship programmes to encourage high-speed broadband research in India.

“Through this collaborative partnership, we will explore new ideas and create unique solutions for broadband deployment in India," said professor Krishnan Balasubramanian, dean, industrial consultancy and sponsored research, IIT, Madras.

“Sterlite is uniquely positioned at the confluence of the government’s vision of Digital India, Make in India, and 100 Smart Cities, and the initiatives announced today are aimed at furthering India’s broadband research muscle," said Dr Anand Agarwal, chief executive officer, Sterlite Technologies.

“Having delivered over 40% of India’s fibre network, Sterlite is playing an integral role in national broadband projects, as well as the back-hauling of all data on 3G,4G and fixed networks," he added.

On Thursday, shares of Sterlite Technologies closed up 0.64% at 62.75 apiece, while the benchmark Sensex ended up 0.41% at 29,681.77 points.

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