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NXP to boost India R&D operations

Posted: 17 Dec 2007 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:India operation? R&D? home electronics?

Lagomichos: India is critical to my plans and to my vision.

Development activities for several product lines of NXP Semiconductors' home electronics division unit are being moved out of Europe, mostly to Asian countries, according to Christos Lagomichos, executive VP and general manager of the division.

Lagomichoswho joined NXP early this year from STMicroelectronics, where he had been corporate VP and general manager of the home entertainment and displays grouphas drawn up a road map for the work that will be done in India.

"There is going to be a dramatic growth in the NXP India R&D center, with a lot of our product lines being moved completely" to Bengaluru, he said. "India is critical to my plans and to my vision. It is not merely the talent that we find here but the cost advantage, as well as the large local market that is making it so."

Global Asian hub
Apart from this, NXP is looking to make India a global Asian hub to cater to the large China market, he said. There are four R&D centers for the home division unit in Europe (England, France, Germany and the Netherlands), one in the United States and another in India.

Overall, the company has some 2,000 employees in R&D and marketing, including about 200 on the India team, and there are plans to double that number shortly.

"I am not very interested in investing in EUthe costs are going up each day. My goal is to continue to move more activities from E.U. to India and move some lines completely out of the EU," Lagomichos said.

"For instance, to date, the low-end STBs have been designed in France; now they are going to be done completely in India," he said. "A significant amount of work in the DTV domain, as well as some on the peripheral front, will also be moved to India."

Lagomichos suggested his biggest challenge would be to sustain the growthto get the right people and to see that there is a successful migration of know-how.

"On paper it is easy, but you need to have the infrastructure in place," he said. "We are working hard to achieve this."

Possible job cuts
He does not rule out any layoffs. "There could be reductions, of course. But it is a competitive world out there, and compared with some of my competitors, I have a 40 percent disadvantage just at the currency level," the NXP executive said.

"The India R&D center is doing both complete solutions as well as collaborative projects, where we do parts of an end-to-end solution," Lagomichos said. "We do the SoC implementation in Southampton, England, the system architecture in Eindhoven, the Netherlands, the intellectual property in Germany and France, and all the software integration in India.

"Ideally, I would love to have all this done in one place," he said, "but that is impossible because we live in a global economy and have to work this way.

"But we make sure that we use our resources properly. If we start duplicating tasks at different locations, it tends to become more complicated."

- Sufia Tippu
EE Times

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