Trivandrum needs a course correction to attract MNCs: Zinnov study


Tvm: Despite having the potential to be a leading Tier-2 city, Trivandrum needs a serious course correction to attract MNCs or else a great opportunity is being lost by Kerala. This is the highlight of a first-of-its-kind study to evaluate the growing popularity and suitability of emerging locations in India titled, ‘Location Analysis: Emerging cities in India’, by Zinnov, a leading Globalization and Market Expansion advisory firm.

The objective of the study is to help MNCs identify optimal locations in India to setup their R&D centres. The study extensively covers and profiles 12 locations in India for assessment based on an exhaustive list of suitability and cost parameters. Five Tier-1 and seven Tier-2 cities were considered for the study and was released on May 09, 2012.
Chandramouli C S, Sr. Director – Globalization Advisory, Zinnov, said, “MNCs started expanding to Tier-2 cities due to advantages like higher catchment area, lower attrition, cost arbitrage, etc. Tier-2 cities, which were initially looked upon for IT / BPO services, now are serious contenders for setting up R&D centers due to the distinctive advantages they provide. However, we also have to make note that these Tier-2 locations are still in nascent stage in terms of establishment as IT hubs and constitute only 2% of MNC R&D talent pool in India at the moment”.

Some of the key findings regarding Trivandrum are:
• Fifth in city wise Business Continuity risk ranking – low crime rate but has experienced natural calamities
• Sixth in Software Product Development under vertical wise city ranking
• Sixth in city wise Quality of Life ranking – excellent climate but low cultural diversity
• Seventh in city wise infrastructure ranking
• Ninth in city wise Support Ecosystem ranking – overall poor innovation ecosystem
• Tenth in city wise Human Resource ranking – good fresh talent pool but poor in country movement of talent
• Average transportation infrastructure but poor international connectivity (especially with EU and USA)
• Good rating for IT infrastructure, transportation within city, and physical and civic infrastructure
• Highest literacy rate in the country but relatively small fresh talent pool
• Rentals are on the higher side, partially due to presence of just one Technology Park

Commenting about the study, Anand Parthasarathy, veteran IT watcher & Editor, said, “It is a pity that a Tier-2 destination like Thiruvananthapuram is not getting the IT business it deserves in spite of being the centre with the highest literacy in India. The Zinnov study points to the minuscule pool of trained talent in the city, this is an amber signal. Unless the State grows its engineering student strength exponentially, it will be overtaken by other cities which can offer large numbers of engineering graduates. Kerala is paying the price for not encouraging private sector presence in higher and professional sectors or doling it in fits and starts.”

“The city is also rated low on cultural diversity and an innovation ecosystem. Again this is a typical Catch 22 situation. Innovation won’t happen unless a city presents a welcoming cultural ambiance that attracts innovative brains from elsewhere. Till Kerala (particularly its capital city) sheds a parochial and arrogant approach to other cultures and develops a more welcoming, broad minded attitude, it will never get out of the chakravyuha that holds back its development as a truly global centre for innovation”, he added.

Founded in 2002, Zinnov – meaning Zeal in Innovation – specialises in areas like Global Sourcing, Emerging Markets Expansion, Human Capital Optimization, Small & Medium Businesses, Innovation, Cloud Computing and Enterprise Mobility.

Anil Philip
Kerala IT News


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