Motorola: Made in India

Motorola today made three announcements that underline the
importance of India as both a manufacturing hub and an emerging market.

Beginning next month, the company’s C115 phone will be made in India. Designed for the mass market, the phone features a long battery life and
personalization tools.

The manufacturing move is the “first step in a multi-phase
manufacturing strategy for India,” Motorola said.

The company is also focused on selling phones in India. Motorola will debut
its slim new L6 handset in India, before offering it in other markets. The
model borrows from the Motorola RAZR and features an integrated camera for
video recording, Bluetooth and a digital audio player.

Finally, Motorola has signed a new agreement with Bharti Teletech to
distribute phones and accessories. Bharti Teletech is expected to help
Motorola sell its products in rural areas.

A Motorola spokesman in India was not immediately available for comment. In
a statement, Allen Burnes, corporate vice president for the high-growth
markets, said, “India is all about opportunity — and today’s announcements
make it clear that Motorola is here to be a major player.”

The announcements are the latest effort by the company to enhance its
presence in India. It has hired 3,000 software engineers in Bangalore and
Hyderabad and built a headquarters building for the high-growth markets unit in

It has also boosted investments in software and hardware design at Indian
centers and is planning to expand its line of mobile devices to appeal to
different economic levels.

Motorola is not alone. In recent years, telecom gear makers have been looking at India for more than inexpensive, tech-savvy labor. They see a
burgeoning market for products and services with growth rates outpacing the
United States and Europe.

The Indian market for equipment and services is expected to jump to $24.3
billion by 2006, up from $13.7 billion in 2001, according to telecom
research firm Frost & Sullivan.

Nortel, Alcatel, Nokia, Cisco and Lucent have all made moves to increase their
operations on the subcontinent in recent years.

News Around the Web