GE bets on India; to hire 6,000 more

September 26th, 2011 - 10:12 pm ICT by IANS  

Bangalore, Sep 26 (IANS) The $150-billion global major General Electric (GE) is betting on India for exponential growth and plans to hire about 6,000 more people over the next five years, a company official said Monday.

“We see robust demand for our infrastructure products and financial services in the Indian market. As we expect our business to grow by 20-30 percent annually, we plan to hire about 6,000 more people to ramp up our headcount in India to 20,000 by 2015,” GE chief executive Jeffrey R. Immelt told reporters here.

Announcing selection of Pune in Maharashtra for setting up its first integrated manufacturing facility in India with an upfront investment of $200 million (nearly Rs.1,000 crore), Immelt said the company would focus on increasing localisation to roll out customised products for the infrastructure sector.

“We will continue to focus on aviation, transportation, energy and healthcare to meet the robust demand and grow our business rapidly. Our multi-technology factory at Pune will initially create about 2,000 jobs,” Immelt said on his first visit to this tech hub.

GE has been present in India since 1902 when it had set up the country’s first hydro power plant in Karnataka. Since then it expanded its footprint by setting up technology centres in Bangalore and Hyderabad, employing about 14,000 people.

“We have substantial business coming up in the renewable energy sector, especially wind energy, with orders for $100 million this year and hope to do $250-million business in the sector next year,” Immelt said.

Combining its engineering and technical talent at the Jack F. Welch Technology Centre in Bangalore and a similar centre in Hyderabad, the US conglomerate plans to increase its revenues and market share substantially in the coming years.

“We have got a business model that allows us to stay focussed on local demand and customers. The Pune facility will allow us to localise and customise our products in diverse sectors. The great technical footprint in Bangalore will help us to penetrate deeper into the Indian market,” Immelt asserted.

Admitting that India was a country of opportunities for GE, the chairman said catering to a market of a billion consumers posed a challenge as infrastructure had to be developed rapidly to create an enabling environment for growth and job creation.

“India is one of the three fastest growing countries for us. I see opportunities for our business in infrastructure products here…,” Immelt said.

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