Samsung Electronics Makes India Fifth Global R&D Base

New Delhi, October 29: | Updated: Oct 30 2002, 05:30am hrs
Samsung Electronics Korea has given the go-ahead to the conversion of its research and development (R&D) base in Noida into a global R&D centre, the fifth in the world.

Samsung exported 1 lakh television units in 2001 and plans to export 1.5 lakh this year.

Samsungs spokesperson Ruchika Batra, while confirming the upgradation of the Indian R&D centre into a global base, said the centre has done so well that last year, we started exporting products developed here.

The software section at the centre will be getting a major boom. Catering to the electronics companys huge software requirement, the centre has been primarily focused on the development of visual display units (VDU). In the last one year, research has progressed onto other products areas. Certain products like Samsungs woofer series and flat screen televisions are currently developed exclusively at the Noida base. Apart from developing colour televisions specifically for the Indian market, the base also makes country and region-specific unit changes to facilitate export.

Now the fifth global Samsung R&D centre (and the third in Asia), the 25-person Noida base is currently taking on 15 new development projects and will be expanding its manpower base by employing 100 more research engineers in the next couple of months. The companys four other global research bases have already been established in China, Thailand, Hungary and the fourth in Mexico, which serves the companys North American operations. Though company officials declined to reveal what new products were being researched at the Noida base, they said the categories into which they fell in the panel display division were colour televisions, projection systems, colour monitors, LCD monitors and plasma technology visual units.

In the first phase of its newly planned expansion, Samsung plans to focus on the development of analog VDU products. But since we are doing so well even globally, the base will soon be developing our digital products too, said Ms Batra.

With no immediate plans on starting more development centres in the subcontinent, the company, which recently entered the washing machine market, has decided to consolidate its presence in the home appliances segment. The Noida base, which currently has software and mechanical sections will soon have an exclusive R&D team dedicated to the development of white goods and other home appliances specifically for the Indian market.