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Gates Concentrates on India

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Gates Concentrates on India - January 21st, 2006

Bangalore seemed totally ready for Bill Gates and all that he had to say at the "Ready Launch 2005" held at Palace grounds, Bangalore.

Addressing over 5000 attendees, Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect, Microsoft Corporation, announced a $1.7 billion investment in India over the next four years. He said that half of Microsoft's investment would go towards the next phase of expansion of its research and development centers in India, thus strengthening the company's presence in the country.

Microsoft SQL Server 2005 and Visual Studio 2005 launched worldwide on November 7, 2005, were also show-cased at the "Ready Launch 2005".

Microsoft announced that 5 major training companies in India
including NIIT, Karrox, IIHT (Indian Institute of Hardware Technology), STG Chennai and New Horizons are ready to roll-out training courses for these technologies. In addition, the company announced that it will train 100 system integrators in the country, and will also reach out to more than 100,000 developers through e-learning courses for these products.

Further show-casing Microsoft's growing commitment to India, Gates,
inaugurated the new Microsoft India facility, located at the Embassy Golf Links Business Park, in the presence of Dharam Singh, chief
minister, Karnataka, and former prime minister, H D Deve Gowda.

The new seven-storied building equipped with world-class infrastructure, will house teams from Microsoft's global customer service and support organization, as well as the product and services marketing team of Microsoft India.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, Gates said, "Over the years, we
have been privileged to receive the support of the Karnataka government, and our business has grown in India as a result of the strong technical and skilled resources available in the state. This new building signals our confidence in the future of this relationship, and our intent to provide our employees with the best possible environment and resources. Our partners and we have 4,000 professionals in India today. We will increase it to 7,000 over the next three to four years."

"The company's efforts in India are aimed at narrowing the digital divide, by creating products that are not only affordable for the poor but also address their unique needs. My dream is to create a computer for every desk and every home. In India, we have not yet scratched the surface. Our growth in employment in India will be far more rapid than in the US", Gates said.

He further said, "We will focus on research to help spread low-cost computing in India, where PC penetration is low because a majority of the population still cannot afford to buy computers."

Microsoft Corporation India is a wholly owned subsidiary of Microsoft Corporation, having its presence in India since 1990 and employing over 2700 people across its offices in New Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Calcutta, Chennai, Hyderabad and Pune.

The company plans to nearly double its work force in India over the next four years, investing $1.7 billion and adding 3,000 jobs in a vote of confidence to one of the world's fastest-growing markets. The investment will also go towards making India a major hub of Microsoft's research, product and application development, services and technical support for both global and domestic companies.

Microsoft has released a special version of its Windows XP Starter Edition in several regional languages; the company plans to make it available in English to meet growing demand.

It will set-up in Bangalore, the country's first Microsoft Innovation Centers (MIC), by January 2006. These centers will provide help to developers, independent software vendors, private and government enterprises in developing and deploying innovative software. Whether this initiative helps reduce market rates of indigenously developed software, remains to be seen...
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