John Chambers, Chairman of US tech giant Cisco, today met Prime Minister Narendra Modi to discuss the firm's role in various government initiatives including Digital India, Skill India, Make in India and cyber security issues.
"During the meeting, he explained to Prime Minister the elements of Cisco's Country Digitisation Acceleration Programme, and how it is aligned to the PM's vision and initiatives including Digital India, Skill India, Make in India, Start Up India, Smart Cities and Cyber Security initiatives," an official statement said.
Appreciating the initiatives taken by Cisco, Modi emphasised benefits of technology in areas like long distance education and in eliminating leakages in subsidy.
He also discussed possibilities of cooperation in the area of cyber security, the statement said.
The USD 143-billion firm has over 10,000 people in India. It is also setting up a manufacturing base in Pune to locally make products to "support the Digital India vision" and aims to eventually make it an export hub.
Cisco invests about USD 1.7 billion every year in India. During December quarter, Cisco saw its global revenues grow by 2 per cent to USD 11.8 billion (excluding SP Video CPE Business for all periods), helped by growth in markets like India (23 per cent).
Its India business has continued to grow at a steady pace over the last seven quarters.
Yesterday, Cisco signed an agreement with Andhra Pradesh government to be a part of India's first state-wide broadband project, 'AP Fiber-Net' here. Under the project, 15 Mbps broadband connection will be provided at Rs 149 per month to households and 100 Mbps connection for offices at Rs 999 per month.
Electrical poles will be used to lay overhead fiber net cable instead of underground cable to save on the cost.
Cisco is also setting up an Internet of Everything (IoE) Innovation Centre in Visakhapatnam to foster regional innovation and will enable partners and startups to build solutions around IoE and engage in rapid prototyping.
In addition, Cisco will also invest in an advanced Technology Center of Excellence and Research Lab in the Institute of Digital Technology (IDT), Tirupati to focus on cyber security, smart city and manufacturing solutions.
The centre will help train graduate engineers in advanced digital technologies and solutions and equip them with skill sets required for the digital era.
Besides, the company will also sponsor and collaborate with Andhra University in Visakhapatnam on a 12-month research program to identify and explore the possibility of developing and customising digital technologies and solutions for rural Andhra Pradesh.