Wipro Limited has set up a centre in western Sydney to bag outsourcing deals from Australia, besides extending its geographical reach.
Wipro, the country's third largest software services exporter, is targeting the telecom, banking and financial services segments in the country. "We are looking at outsourcing deals in IT infrastructure integration and management, software testing and security consulting," said Rajat Mathur, head of Middle East and APAC, Wipro.
This new centre would provide consulting, software development and testing services to both Australian companies and other firms that are based in that country. Wipro began its Australian operations in 2002 with a sales and marketing presence.
The company is also planning to hire local talent to serve both local and global customers. To begin with, the company would have 50 people in its new centre, in addition to the 300 people who work in development centres in Sydney and Victoria.
Rivals Infosys, Tata Consultancy Services and Satyam already have a sizeable presence in Australia. Infosys established a consulting presence in the country after its acquisition of Expert Information Systems in 2003, while TCS has about 500 consultants working with its Australian subsidiary through acquisitions and organic growth.
An appreciating rupee has been among the primary reasons for companies rushing to open new development centres in places like Australia. The Indian currency has appreciated almost 9 per cent since May this year against the dollar and has led to sleepless nights for most Indian IT companies that on an average earned about 70 per cent of their revenues from US-based clients.
According to industry watchers, a reason for delay in setting up bases in Australia has been the slow opening up of the domestic Australian market. Moreover, homegrown Australian companies like the Macquarie Group, Australia and New Zealand Bank (ANZ), Qantas, among others are already beginning to outsource a part of their work to Indian software companies. TCS recently won an outsourcing deal from AGL Energy Limited (AGL), Australia's largest retailer of gas and electricity for $16 million.
"Indian IT companies need a geographical spread to give them a bit of a cushion against the appreciating rupee. With Australian companies starting to embrace outsourcing, Indian companies quite clearly need to strengthen their presence there quickly," said an analyst with a Mumbai-based brokerage.