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February 23, 1998


Interlink to make India a hubbing centre

Email this story to a friend. Funds Switching Technologies Limited of the UK (traded as Interlink), a leading British software company specialising in ATM switch software and services solutions, has announced major plans for India which will be implemented in three phases.

The company had received a Foreign Investment Promotion Board clearance to set up a wholly owned subsidiary in December.

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Country Manger (India) K Sambasivan has said the initiative of Interlink's India office, to be headquartered in Bangalore, would consolidate the company's position in the country and make its base here a regional hub catering to SAARC countries.

Spurred by the banking reforms and growth in the number of ATM installations in India, Interlink has decided to set up a 100 per cent subsidiary in the country. The number of ATM installations has crossed the 500 mark, Sambasivan pointed out.

"We are basically a software house and our activities are closely linked to the extent of automatic teller machines penetration. We decided to set up shop in India as we realised that the installed base of ATMs here has touched a critical volume,'' Sambasivan explained.

"The environment we were looking for is 'anytime anywhere banking' and we saw this happening in India," he said. "Moreover, our presence as a 100 per cent subsidiary will help us in providing good after sales service and support to our customers,'' he said.

Further, the company is setting up a proof-of-concept centre here which will house multiple brand ATM switches.

"Bankers would be allowed to test the company's solutions on a variety of platforms,'' he said. The first phase of operations will see Interlink setting up the India office apart from initiating activity in the region.

Sambasivan, however, declined to reveal the investment the company was making in India. "I am not in a position to provide the figures now. The investment will be sizeable and will be made in phases,'' he said.

In the second phase, the India office will start providing sales and support service for the SAARC region. Phase three will see the company setting up a software development centre in Bangalore.

Interlink provides support in the form of delivery, implementation, training to customers and maintenance of its products as well as undertaking consultancy and overall project management.

Further, the company plans to set up a training centre for banking professionals. The faculty would be flown in from London, he said.

In India, Interlink already has eight sites running its Sparrow solution in Canara Bank, Standard Chartered Bank and IDBI.

Interlink's Y2K complied software products are designed for use on self-service machines and distributed processors. These have been designed to operate on CDOS or UNIX computers and provide the users with flexible solutions to support a network of cash dispensers, self-service terminals, point-of-sale terminals as well as a variety of connections to public and international networks.

The core switch software is the Sparrow. The Hawk/Hawk-direct supports the Sparrow on a variety of ATMs.

Add-on modules such as Sparrow-PoS, Sparrow-VISA, Sparrow-MC and Sparrow-Amex enable point-of-sale terminals and a variety of international credit cards to be linked to their respective networks.

Worldwide, Interlink has over 200 installations in 74 countries. Interlink was established in the UK in 1983 to provide consultancy and software development services to the national retail banks in West Asia.

Since then, the company has diversified by making substantial investments in the development of specialised software products to satisfy the needs of retail and banking institutions.

- Compiled from the Indian media

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