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Trichy ELCOT Park cries for expansion

Related imageDecentralisation and localisation are the order of the day, be it textile showrooms or international retail outlets, all are keen to tap local potential, especially in Tier-II cities. IT and ITeS companies are no exceptions. In 2002, there was only a couple of IT solution providers in the city, now there are a dozen. With IT firms proliferating in Tiruchy, Express focuses on Electronic Corporation of Tamil Nadu Limited (ELCOT) IT Park

THE Chennai floods of Decem-ber 2015 came as an eye opener to many. The IT and ITeS sectors racked up losses of thousands of crores of rupees, causing them to look for backup facilities in Tier-11 cities. After Coimbatore, it is Tiruchy which has benefited the most as several firms have shifted here. At least half-a-dozen companies, including existing ITeS players in Rockcity, have shored up their strength at EL-COT IT Park here, citing the peaceful quality of life free of chaotic traffic.

Seven companies in IT Park IN the early 2000s, as the then Tamil Nadu government proposed to establish IT parks across Tier-II cities like Madurai, Salem, Hosur and Tiruchy through ELCOT. The plan worked out well as for Tiruchy lT Park, built at an estimated cost of Rs 14 crore and was inaugurated in 2010. Office space of about 50,000 sq. ft in Tiruchy IT  Park, located in Navalpattu Special Economic Zone (SEZ), is occupied by as many as seven companies, mostly soft-ware outsourcing service provid-ers and publishing outsourcing firms. Similarly, about 60 per cent of land available in the SEZ is leased by around nine companies.
Distance matters
V Guruvayurappan, Senior Vice President, Human Resources of Omega Healthcare, which operates from Tiruchy, said, "Operational costs for firms like ours in Tier-II cities like Tiruchy would come down by at least 25-28 per cent compared to metros. We have good talent available in Tiruchy and its surrounding areas as plenty of software professionals working in metros are from the Cauvery delta districts." Besides, the availability of man-power and less operational costs, the proximity of Tiruchy to Chennai due to a strong rail and road network is an advantage when compared to Coimbatore and Madurai.

 NIT factor
ANOTHER major advantage Tiruchy has over Coimbatore and Madurai is the presence of the National Institute of Technology-Tiruchy (NIT-T), Indian Institute of Information and Technology (IIIT) and Indian Institute of Management (HM), all top-class education institutes. Considering the strength of graduates from these institutes, if at least 10 per cent of them who are now in senior positions in the IT sector, decide to set up a secondary facility here, Tiruchy could register two-fold growth, sources said. "Maybe NIT-T alumni now working in a reputed company such as TCS can try the concept of giving back to Tiruchy. Provided top brass can persuade their organisations to open a facility in Tier-II cities, employment opportunities as well as economic development of the city would boom like never before," A Aravind, convenor of a city-based welfare organisation. said. What IT Park lacks A major reason for many ITeS firms to refrain from establish-ing a facility in Navalpattu IT Park is its remote location. With limited bus con-nectivity and as many firms have to operate in night shifts with women employees, IT firms are not eager to take any risks, so choose to seek out office space in the heart of the city "If any of the software solution providers have to set up a 100-seat facility at ELCOT IT Park at Navalpattu, they have to arrange for transport facilities, which would increase costs. The government and district administration should come forward to connect and develop the SEZ properly," H Shreyas, a city-based software analyst told Express.

Will It be expanded?
Considering 60 per cent of the 60 acre area of the SEZ has been leased by around nine companies and with ELCOT sources claiming office space has been completely occupied by IT and ITeS firms, there has been talk of expanding the IT park or perhaps shifting to a better location. 'No doubt Tiruchy has become a preferred destination when it comes to Tier-11 cities. From last year, land leased by firms in the SEZ has increased by 10 per cent The only problem is the location, far from the national highways. Though office space in Tiruchy Park has been completely filled, we have no immediate plans for expansion," an ELCOT source said. The official added security measures should be taken up by the respective firms though security arrangements for the entire facility are provided by ELCOT. With the presence of IT and ITeS firms slowly but steadily increasing, investors and development organisations are being nudged to set up an SEZ near the city.

Scientific Publishing Services: Publishing outsourcing business
VDart Technologies: IT Solution Provider
Link Systems: IT solution provider
Vuram: IT Solution Provider

Infoview- an upcoming ITeS firm in Tiruchy covering multiple platforms
Dextrasys- Knowledge Process Outsourcing (KPO) firm
eQuadriga- offshore IT solution provider.
Capgernini BPO
Omega Healthcare

Source: epaper. . new indianexpress . com//c/20716059 

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