Kerala IT firm gives IBM, Unisys a run for their money | india | Hindustan Times
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Kerala IT firm gives IBM, Unisys a run for their money

india Updated: Aug 01, 2007 12:58 IST

IANS
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IBS Software Services, a Kerala-headquartered IT company that began its operations about 10 years back, is now giving global software giants like IBM and Unisys a run for their money.

IBS, which began its operations here in September 1997, has become a leading global provider of new generation IT solutions to travel, transportation and logistics (TTL) industries of major airlines, airports, oil and gas companies, seaports, cruise lines and tour operators worldwide.

Its 70 high profile clients include leading airlines like Emirates, Qantas, Cathay Pacific, leading airports including Heathrow, Gatwick and Dubai as well as oil giants such as Shell and British Petroleum.

The company's client base also includes cruise liners like Cunard (Queen Mary II and Queen Elizabeth II), Royal Caribbean Cruise and Star Cruise and leading resorts like Vail Resorts, Inc (VRI), the premier mountain resort operator in the US, Brendan Vacations and Orbitz.

Addressing reporters in Thiruvananthapuram on Wednesday, VK Mathews, chairman of IBS, said the company was started with a staff of only 55.

"We began with a paid up capital of Rs 1.76 crore (Rs 17.6 million) and today it has touched more than Rs 800 crore (Rs 8 billion)," he said.

"During the one decade of its existence IBS has done three domain-based acquisitions of companies abroad," said Mathews.

Last week, General Atlantic, a leading global private equity firm, invested $60 million (Rs 2.42 billion) in IBS.

"This investment is the single largest private equity (PE) investment in Kerala and probably also the largest PE investment into an IT products company in the country," said Mathews.

Currently, IBS has a staff of 1,800 in 10 centres across the globe and has four development centres located in Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, London and Washington.

Despite providing necessary IT support to some of the world's leading airlines, IBS is yet to ink a deal with India's state-run carrier Air India.

"Air India is a government company and it takes a lot of time to enter and now we are engaged in discussions. We are certain that Air India will clearly save 25 per cent in flight operations cost if they use our products," said Mathews.

He said IBS is eyeing more acquisitions and is also on the verge of entering the systems management for aircraft maintenance.

"Our IPO (initial public offering) is due in two years and we are aiming for a billion dollar valuation," said Mathews.