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Microsoft strengthens ties with India's HCL

Posted: 15 Apr 2008 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:strategic alliance? India IT market? Microsoft India?

Microsoft Corp. and India's HCL Infosystems have agreed on a set of initiatives that will further strengthen their long-standing alliance.

The companies announced plans for the creation of a joint Center of Excellence (CoE) for the development of vertical-specific customized solution frameworks for India; the launch of the world's lowest-cost Windows OS-enabled laptop under the MiLeap brand of HCL laptops; and generating an industry-ready workforce certified in Microsoft technologies at the HCL career development centers.

Kevin Turner, Microsoft chief operating officer, said, "For over 22 years, Microsoft and HCL have partnered with each other to promote the use of information technology in India. We are delighted to reinforce this association and empower Indian consumers and businesses with the latest and best that technology has to offer."

HCL, which launched the MiLeap series of laptops earlier this year, announced the rollout of the Windows OS-enabled MiLeap. Available at $425, it is touted to be the lowest-priced Windows XP-powered laptop in the market. The MiLeap H Series runs on Windows XP Home, has a 30Gbyte HDD and is broadband-ready.

The new CoE will house over 500 software professionals to create, design and deploy Microsoft technologies based solution frameworks across various industry verticals. The CoE will leverage the system integration capabilities of HCL and Microsoft's suite of products in the area of IT requirement of customers across verticals, which include telecom, banking, financial services and insurance, power, defense, retail, eGovernance, media and entertainment, and MS-based horizontal solutions in health, railways and airports.

The third part of the alliance includes an agreement to train and certify 50,000 students on Microsoft technologies, in three years, across 100 HCL career development centers. The curriculum used will be the Microsoft Official Curriculum, a comprehensive and structured learning methodology designed and developed by Microsoft. The goal of the training initiative is to enhance the employability of students and help the Indian IT industry retain its competitive edge. The training will also provide a targeted framework for IT managers to validate core technical, professional and architectural skills.

Ajai Chowdhry, chairman and CEO, commented, "Both HCL and Microsoft are key players in India market and this alliance has bought value to the Indian customer with over three decades of innovation, passion and defining markets. I am sure that this alliance will further enable overall development in our country with IT as the key enabler."

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