Interview| Blueprint for innovation: India hub for skilled talent, says Infor CEO | The Financial Express

Interview| Blueprint for innovation: India hub for skilled talent, says Infor CEO

Firm expands India footprint with new campus in Hyderabad

Interview| Blueprint for innovation: India hub for skilled talent, says Infor CEO
Kevin Samuelson, Infor CEO

Kevin Samuelson, chief executive officer of industry cloud company Infor which employs over 3,700 people at its Hyderabad development centre, is bullish on India. As a global hub of innovation in software development, India is one of the world’s most exciting economies and will continue to attract the best of companies from around the world on the strength of its huge technical talent base, he said.

“India is the strategic hub for skilled talent and global technology development for Infor. Over the past decade, we have harnessed the true potential of the immense talent pool in the region,” said Samuelson, who was recently in India to announce the expansion of the firm’s operations here with a new development centre in Hyderabad.

“The amount of innovation that comes out of India… there’s a reason that a lot of companies come here for technical talent and innovation… because it’s extraordinary,” he told FE in an interview. “From a business perspective, Infor’s India operations have grown at an unprecedented pace, doubling every three or four years. Demand for Infor’s solutions is growing exponentially in industry verticals like automotive, aerospace, defense, food and beverage, distribution, industrial manufacturing, and healthcare,” he said.

The new centre will play a pivotal role in sharpening Infor’s focus on developing breakthrough technologies and help world-class companies such as Larsen and Toubro, Godrej Industries, Spykar, Plant Lipids and DB Schenker drive business transformations to achieve superior outcomes. Infor’s India Development Centre in Hyderabad is among its top two largest locations worldwide.

Most companies use offshore locations to provide maintenance services or fix bugs, he pointed out. However, at Infor, it is almost like ownership of developing key innovations. “For instance, specific modules and components within the product development of cloud suites are completely developed at the Hyderabad centre. This also gives talent the exposure and opportunities to be on the frontlines of innovation, learn the latest technologies, and work with global customers,” he said.

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Samuelson reckoned that the pandemic-led disruption has challenged industries to reimagine and transform their global operations. Leveraging new-age technologies like cloud computing, artificial intelligence, mobile computing, and analytics that shape business software like enterprise resource planning (ERP) can be the solution to drive sustainable growth.

“It’s been an extraordinary couple of years on how competitive dynamics and companies continue to change through technology and innovation. We believe that software is becoming more core and strategic to customers across all industries,” stressed Samuelson. “Specifically, at Infor, we focus on business software that runs the most critical operations for companies. Enabling customers, the opportunity to drive more intelligence around their business and the ability to do it in the cloud also gives customers more flexibility and more insights.”

According to Gartner, end-user spending on enterprise application software in India is projected to increase by 14.6% from 2021 to reach a total of $4.2 billion in 2022. Across industries, businesses are adopting technology with industry-specific functionality for driving automation to improve efficiencies and reach the market faster.

“Traditionally, it can take years to implement a product in ERP. Typical customer challenges revolve around anticipated return on investments  and gaining an improved business performance. Hence, one of the things we have done differently is specialising the products and experience with deep industry functionality,” he said. That, he said, has been a big differentiator for Infor.

“It allows customers to go live and get value from the product quickly,” he emphasised.

STRATEGIC STEPS

Infor aims to leverage India’s talent pool to drive digital innovation

New development centre in Hitech City, Hyderabad, can house 3,500 employees

R&D focus to be on cloud, mobility, data analytics, AI and IoT

Demand for Infor’s solutions growing in automotive, aerospace, defense, F&B, & healthcare

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First published on: 07-11-2022 at 00:15 IST