THIRU­VANAN­THA­PU­RAM: ONE OF SOUTH’S HOTTEST...

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Best known for its scenic and un­du­lat­ing na­ture and warm hos­pi­tal­ity, Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram...

Best known for its scenic and un­du­lat­ing na­ture and warm hos­pi­tal­ity, Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram, also called as Trivan­drum is one of the prom­i­nent cities in the state of Ker­ala. The rapid growth in IT, par­tic­u­larly in the soft­ware in­dus­try has trans­formed Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram into the fourth hottest IT des­ti­na­tion in In­dia. The city has emerged as a fasted de­vel­op­ing IT and com­mer­cial hub in re­cent years.

STRATE­GIC IM­POR­TANCE

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram is a strate­gi­cally very im­por­tant city in South­ern In­dia. Be­ing the largest city in ex­treme south, it is im­por­tant for both mil­i­tary and civil avi­a­tion. It is the head­quar­ters of the South­ern Air Com­mand (SAC) of the In­dian Air Force. It also pro­vides a key link in the move­ment of goods and pas­sen­gers to and from south­ern parts of Tamil Nadu into Ker­ala, the state bor­der be­ing just 30 km from the city cen­tre.

GROWTH OF COM­MER­CIAL SEC­TOR

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram has wit­nessed ex­pe­di­tious growth in the industrial and com­mer­cial sec­tor. With big industrial ty­coons com­ing in, it has opened doors of op­por­tu­ni­ties to many small and medium scale in­dus­tries. Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram was listed as one of the top 10 cites in In­dia on Vi­brancy In­dex and Con­sump­tion In­dex by a study con­ducted by global fi­nan­cial ser­vices firm Mor­gan Stan­ley. The open­ing of many pri­vate tele­vi­sion chan­nels in the state made Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram the home of sev­eral stu­dios and re­lated in­dus­tries. Tourism has also con­trib­uted heav­ily to the econ­omy of Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram.

CEN­TER OF ED­U­CA­TIONAL

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram is an aca­demic hub. The Uni­ver­sity of Ker­ala and the re­gional head­quar­ters of Indira Gandhi Na­tional Open Uni­ver­sity (IGNOU) are sit­u­ated here. There are many pro­fes­sional ed­u­ca­tion col­leges in­clud­ing fif­teen en­gi­neer­ing col­leges, three med­i­cal col­leges, three Ayurveda col­leges, two Home­opa­thy col­leges, six other med­i­cal re­lated col­leges, and two law col­leges in the city and its sub­urbs.

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram is a home of sev­eral renowned Science and Re­search cen­tres like Uni­ver­sity of Ker­ala, In­dian Space Re­search Or­gan­i­sa­tion (ISRO), Vikram Sarab­hai Space Cen­tre (VSSC), the In­dian In­sti­tute of Space Science and Tech­nol­ogy (IIST), the In­dian In­sti­tute of In­for­ma­tion Tech­nol­ogy and Man­age­ment, Ker­ala, In­dian In­sti­tute of Science, Ed­u­ca­tion and Re­search (IISER) etc.

BOOM­ING IT IN­DUS­TRY

South In­dia has played a vi­tal role mak­ing In­dia a lead­ing IT soft­ware ex­porter in the world. Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram can be called as a Sil­i­con Val­ley of Ker­ala which con­trib­utes nearly 80 per­cent soft­ware ex­port from the state. The city has am­ple hu­man tal­ent. Ma­jor chunk of highly qual­i­fied IT pro­fes­sion­als in Ker­ala comes from Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram. The estab­lish­ment of the Tech­nopark has fur­ther es­ca­lated growth of the soft­ware in­dus­try mak­ing Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram the best 2nd tier metro with IT/ITES in­fra­struc­ture. The Tech­nopark is home to nearly 300 IT com­pa­nies in­clud­ing some of the big gi­ants like Or­a­cle, In­fosys, TCS, Tata Elxsi, IBS Soft­ware Ser­vices, NeST Soft­ware, Sun­Tec Busi­ness So­lu­tions etc. It em­ploys more than 40000 IT pro­fes­sion­als.

CHAN­NEL AND CHAL­LENGES

The hard­ware in­dus­try too has marked con­sis­tent growth with pres­ence of all ma­jor brands in the city. There are more than 100 re­sellers in Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram. Like other re­gions, On­line Sales have im­pacted busi­nesses of off­line chan­nel part­ners. Apart from E Com­merce, VAT is the ma­jor is­sue of con­cern which part­ners hope that might be re­solved with GST com­ing in force soon.

Vinod Vil­la­pan, owner of Vetwin Tech­nolo­gies said, “E Com­merce has se­verely im­pacted our busi­ness. There is a pro­long de­mand to im­pose VAT on on­line busi­ness. Apart from that we also de­mand en­try tax on goods sourced from other re­gions.”

Vinod said that tax­a­tion would lead E Com­merce com­pa­nies to ret­ro­spect their dis­count poli­cies and they would com­pel to re­think on their dis­count driven sales prac­tices.

John G Kot­tara, owner of Cy­ber Cor­po­ra­tion says the gov­ern­ment and ven­dors need to take ap­pro­pri­ate ac­tion to curb on­line men­ace.

All Ker­ala IT Deal­ers As­so­ci­a­tion ( AKITDA) is a prom­i­nent IT as­so­ci­a­tion in the city. The as­so­ci­a­tion through its ac­tive rep­re­sen­ta­tions to the gov­ern­ment time to time raises chan­nel’s con­cerns. The as­so­ci­a­tion is in­stru­men­tal in rais­ing chan­nel’s con­cerns at the same time it also gives rec­om­men­da­tions in gov­ern­ment’s pol­icy mak­ing.

FU­TURE PROSPECTS

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram has huge prospects for the growth of IT. At the same time the state gov­ern­ment has shown pos­i­tive signs to speed up IT in­fra­struc­ture devel­op­ment projects that will fur­ther en­cour­age IT play­ers to set up their busi­nesses in the city. The growth in IT would lead to over­all growth and devel­op­ment of var­i­ous stake­hold­ers in the in­dus­try.

Thiru­vanan­tha­pu­ram at a glance IT As­so­ci­a­tion: All Ker­ala IT Deal­ers

As­so­ci­a­tion

Num­ber of part­ners: 100 Plus Key Ver­ti­cals: IT/ITES, Ed­u­ca­tion, Gov­ern­ment, Tourism

Ma­jor Brands: Kasper­sky, Canon, HP,

Dell, Len­ovo

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