The secret of selecting the right place to set up operations: somewhere practical, somewhere pleasant

Several foreign companies make the mistake of believing that all that happens in India happens in New Delhi or Bombay. But Bangalore, a “small provincial” town that boasts of the most pleasant weather in India and where great animation features such as Shrek, Kung Fu Panda and Madagascar were created, proves to be more than just a wise choice. In addition to this, Bangalore wins hands down and deservedly its title as the most cosmopolitan city in India making it a ‘smooth landing’.

Following the creation in 1976 of the Electronic City that was set up to receive Indian IT giants and the establishment in 1985 of the first American company in the ICT sector, Bangalore has within 30 years successfully become the “Silicon Valley” of India that we know today.

A drive around the numerous “IT Parks” is enough to gauge the size of this phenomenon. But this view could sometimes be simplistic and a partial view of this city, which with its population of more than 10 million (4th largest city in India) is also home to other sectors.

Bangalore often appears in the list of provincial towns for the simple reason that most of the big Indian companies and MNCs are headquartered in Delhi or Mumbai. However this capital of the Karnataka state (in the south of India) has since become the location of choice for the R&D centers or support services centers (IT, Call Centers, Maintenance) of these very same companies.

Bangalore’s weather, relatively lower real estate costs, availability of young graduates from globally recognized colleges and universities (IIM-B, Indian Institute of Science) and direct air connections to many European capitals give it a distinct advantage as an attractive location. Several companies have therefore used it as a launch pad before expanding to the rest of India.

Today more than 150 French companies and around ten Canadian companies are located in Bangalore. They are doing well in the vibrant sectors of biotechnology, aeronautics and space as well as textiles.

The likely closure of large deals in these sectors, under Indo-French partnerships will only increase the attractiveness of Bangalore which today is home to about 650 French nationals.
Some French companies in Bangalore

Largest French employer in Bangalore:
AXA

Aeronautics sector:
SAFRAN, EUROCOPTER, THALES and DASSAULT, EADS, AIRBUS. Several French SMEs such as MACAERO and RECAERO, ATS, SONOVISION, ASSYSTEM

Manufacturing:
SEEB

ICT sector:
CAP GEMINI, SOPRA, ATOS, GEMALTO, INGENICO, TECHNICOLOR, ALTRAN, DASSAULT SYSTEMES, SAFRAN MORPHO, ALCATEL LUCENT, TOBOC

Transport and urban services:
VEOLIA, SUEZ

Environment:
EGIS, JC DECAUX, SYSTRA, LUMIPLAN, FAIVELEY, SDV and AGS

Energy, Electricity supply:
TOTAL, SCHNEIDER ELECTRIC, HAGER, CARBONE LORRAINE

Consumer goods and Agribusiness:
ESSILOR, LIMAGRAIN

Retail:
DECATHLON, AUCHAN

Hotels, Restaurants, Tourism:
ACCOR, TOSCANO, CAFE NOIR

Banking sector:
SOCIETE GENERALE, BNP-PARIBAS, CREDIT AGRICOLE

And a host of entrepreneurs who have now settled in India to provide outsourcing for their French customers.

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