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Foreign firms scramble to forge Indian alliances

india Updated: Feb 09, 2007 19:12 IST
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Gautam Makker is the managing director of not-so-well-known forging company in Vishakhapatnam. Participating in Aero India has paid off for him, as it has for scores of other Indian firms vying for tie-ups with foreign companies to expand their business.

Makker, who heads Flash Forge, said: "The airshow is just the right platform for companies like us to get noticed. Global giants like Rolls Royce, General Electric and Pratt and Whitney are looking at sourcing components from India. There are some really exciting business opportunities on the horizon."

Several Indian companies are utilising the Aero India platform to showcase their capabilities for offset implementation.

Defence acquisition rules make it mandatory for foreign vendors to generate commercial activity in India --- 30 per cent of the value of defence contracts over Rs 300 crore needs to be offset by purchases, investments and transfer of technology to India.

The offset policy is likely to bring in $8-10 billion during the 11th Plan Period
(2007-12).

The airshow serves to illustrate how foreign firms are scrambling to tie up with domestic firms with an eye on future business opportunities.

Defence and aerospace major Northrop Grumman, for instance, have inked a MoU with Bangalore-based Dynamatic Technologies to explore opportunities in defence electronics.

Northrop Grumman's international business development manager Tom C Trudell said that there was tremendous scope for cooperation with Indian firms and some more tie-ups would materialise soon.

Intensifying their focus on India as a strategic market, a whole lot of foreign firms
have formed alliances with Indian companies and made announcements at Aero India.

If Boeing IDS is getting cosy with Larsen and Toubro, Raytheon has decided to do business with Tata Power.

Elbit Systems of Israel is setting up a JV company with BEL for development of thermal imaging cameras. Thales and EADS announced their Indian alliances on day three
of the airshow.

Aerospace biggies competing for the IAF's 126 fighter aircraft tender are aggressively identifying future collaborators.

Brian J Nelson, director, India communications, Boeing IDS, said, "We want to build
partnerships that will come in handy for offset implementation. It is also our effort to identify companies which can become a part of Boeing's supply chain for a variety of aerospace products".

Ian Malin, head of Typhoon exports, BAE Systems said his company had constituted specialist teams to identify partners for the offset programme.

Email rahul Singh: rahulsingh @hindustantimes.com

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