West Bengal IT hub to have new building

February 19th, 2008 - 4:13 pm ICT by admin  

Kolkata, Feb 19 (IANS) A new building, Globsyn Crystals, will open April at West Bengal’s burgeoning IT hub at Salt Lake City here to meet the increasing demand for space in the core area. “We are promoting these buildings in Sector V (in Salt Lake) to accelerate the growth in the IT sector in West Bengal. We have already sold all the plots at Sector V and there is hardly any land left. If these towers come up, it will help us accommodate more IT workforce in the same area,” Siddharth, the state’s principal secretary at the IT department, told IANS.

He said Sector V was the preferred destination for most IT companies and multinationals for its strategic location and facilities.

“Presently about 20 million sq ft of office place for the IT industry is under construction in West Bengal. A number of high-tech buildings (similar to Globsyn Crystals) are coming up,” he said, adding that the state government has also relaxed the floor area ratio (FAR) for the IT sector.

“The FAR ratio is 5.9 at Sector V, which is almost more than double compared to the FAR for other plots available in Kolkata.”

Globsyn Crystals, spread over 12 acres, is a state-of-the-art IT building developed through a joint venture with Kolkata-based realty firm Sureka Group and Shrachi Group and funding agency New Vernon Private Equity Ltd (NVPEL).

The building would offer 600,000 sq ft of work place with a capacity to accommodate over 5,000 people at a time.

NVPEL is a Mauritius-based firm making private equity investments primarily in India.

“In our venture, Sureka Group and Shrachi Group jointly own 50 percent of share while NVPEL has a partnership of the remaining 50 percent. This was also the first foreign direct investment (FDI) in the realty sector in West Bengal,” Sureka Group CEO Ravi Venkatesh said.

He said the first phase of the building is complete and would open from April this year while the second phase would be operational by July 2009.

The investment for the project is nearly Rs.3 billion.

“Multinational companies like Aircel, Airtel and Ericsson have already booked office space in the first phase. We are in talks with many big IT companies to accommodate them in the second phase of the building,” Venkatesh said.

Talking on opportunities in the IT sector, the IT principal secretary said that there would be a requirement of 200,000 IT professionals by 2010 in West Bengal because many companies are lining up to open shop here.

He said West Bengal was growing at a rate of 71 percent against the national growth rate of 36 percent in the IT sector.

Presently, there are about 44,000 IT professionals employed in this industry and there are about 4 million sq ft of space occupied by IT companies in the state.

The sector generates Rs.32 billion every year in West Bengal.

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