Finance firm Mastercard has committed to growing its India-based workforce with its latest technology hub in Pune.
The centre is Mastercard’s largest outside the US and will focus on developing payment technologies.
Mastercard hopes to dip into the IT skills in India and the current trends seeing successful startups coming out of the country.
“India is renowned for its technology leadership, focus on innovation and entrepreneurial spirit,” said Rob Reeg, president for operations and technology at Mastercard. “The tech hub gives Mastercard the opportunity to bring in talented technologists and a wealth of creative new ideas that will help shape the future of payments.”
Following the opening of the centre, about 10% of Mastercard's staff will be based in India. The company wants these engineers and developers to work with teams globally. Mastercard expects the development to allow it to increase the number of IT professionals it recruits.
“Teams in India will be developing solutions that enhance online transactions and the payments value chain, as well as innovations around mobile and contactless payments services. With the rich pool of skilled talent available in India, the company intends to significantly increase the number of technologists in the near future,” said Mastercard.
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In 2014, the company acquired two Indian firms – C-SAM and ECS – giving it development and processing expertise in India. It said several innovations developed in India are already being integrated into global offerings.
“Mastercard approaches innovation with the customer in mind, creating solutions that address not only business opportunities but the needs of emerging markets,” said Ari Sarker, Mastercard division president, South Asia. “The Tech Hub teams in India will be playing an important role in creating and supporting payments innovations that will be used around the world.”
Large businesses are increasingly setting up tech hubs in offshore locations, with India still the prime location for many. By setting up a hub, businesses can benefit from the lower cost of staff in these regions, but also have control of their own staff. Traditional offshoring, where companies outsource via a supplier, often results in less committed staff and high attrition.
India is still the best place for businesses to outsource services and is unrivalled in its scale and availability of skills, according to AT Kearney’s latest index, which ranks business services locations.
Asian countries dominate the management consultancy’s index of the top 50 global locations, with six of the top 10 in the region.
India (1), China (2) and Malaysia (3) make up the top three, while Indonesia (5), Thailand (6) and the Philippines (7) follow close behind, with only Mexico (4) splitting the group. The remaining three in the top 10 are Brazil (8), Bulgaria (9) and Egypt (10).