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January 14, 1998


Large software park coming up in Orissa

Email this story to a friend. A US project development company claims it is replicating Silicon Valley in the north-eastern state of Orissa by creating a technology park spread over 250 acres in capital Bhubaneshwar.

Intech Global Resources Inc of Houston is also developing in India a 2,000 MW power project as well as captive generating capacities of 30 to 40 MW.

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"The Bhubaneshwar Electronics and Software Technology Park will have the atmosphere of the Silicon Valley in terms of facilities and work environment," claimed company vice-president Nalin R Pillai, an Indian American.

"The Smart Park, as we call it, is being landscaped like Woodlands of Houston where high-technology biotech engineering companies are headquartered," he said.

The park, Pillai said, will house software technology development companies and research and development firms, which can own and operate organisations in a very globally competitive environment.

"We recognise that to unleash the creative and innovative energy of the people, we have to create a conducive atmosphere for knowledge workers," he said.

The park, which is a self-contained township, will have music halls, entertainment centres, a five-star hotel, technology incubators and multimedia education centres.

It is being developed as a unique centre for high-tech development, Pillai claimed, adding that every home and office in the park will be wired using latest connectivity tools so that employees can choose to work from home or office any time of the day.

The park will house R&D facilities for silicon solar cells, pharmaceutical and drug development laboratories besides software development firms. "Through the silicon solar cell manufacturing units in the Bhubaneshwar park, Intech plans to establish a lead in solar energy-based power plants," Pillai said.

Another unique project that is coming up in the park is the technology incubator.

Innovation Creativity Capital (IC Square) Institute of University of Texas in Austin has shown interest in working with the park to promote several incubators, he said.

"Incubators are for helping entrepreneurs with their proposals and concepts including patented products," Pillai explained.

"But it will not buy patents or other inventions. Indian entrepreneurs can work with the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research or Indian Institutes of Technology, for example, and then use the incubator units to launch successful business," he said.

Pillai said Intech would not provide venture capital but would go after funding sources for projects. The total investment it would be making in the technology park is estimated at $100 million and Intech is hoping to double business in India every 12 months.

Intech, which has set up a company Taurus Techno-Solutions, has started a software development, consulting and training facility in Cochin, Kerala, at an estimated cost $300,000.

Another Intech company, Taurus Soft Trac Inc, is setting up similar projects in Houston at almost the same cost for software development, Pillai said.

In 1998 Intech projects an investment of a million dollars in information technology projects alone.

Pillai said India could develop and sustain its competitive edge in information technology only through training of IT specialists familiar with mainframe computers and client-server technologies.

"We are providing such facilities and training at our Taurus facilities in Cochin," he added.

He said Intech can help finance software companies which want to implement and absorb latest information technology concepts, they cannot remain competitive in the global market," Pillai said.

- Compiled from the Indian media

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