Multinational digital communications technology conglomerate Cisco will start manufacturing in India in a bid to expand its footprint in the country. In an exclusive media event held in New Delhi, Chuck Robbins, chair and CEO, Cisco announced that the company will cater to the growing demand from customers in India and aims to drive more than $1 billion in combined domestic production and exports in the coming years. Daisy Chittilapilly, president, Cisco Indian and SAARC was also in attendance. “India is of strategic importance for Cisco, and we continue to bet on India. Today’s announcement marks a significant milestone to power the next phase of growth for Cisco. This investment will enable us to bring state-of-the-art technologies to more people and businesses and help accelerate India’s transition into a leading digital economy,” she said while retreating that innovation, investment and impact remains a top priority for the company when it comes to India.
Robbins announced that the strategic investments in Indian manufacturing capabilities would be the next step in delivering technologies to the company’s customers in India and across the globe. The company said that some of the areas that they were planning to invest in are 6G, artificial intelligence, cybersecurity, hybrid cloud, technology and connectivity and generative AI to name a few. The announcement was made after a Chuck Robbins held a series of meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Dr S Jaishankar, External Affairs Minister, Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Union Minister of State for Entrepreneurship, Skill Development, Electronics and Technology, BVR Subrahmanyam, CEO of NITI Aayog, and K Rajaraman, Telecom Secretary.
“Thank you for your leadership, Honorable PM of India! Thrilled to announce Cisco is investing in manufacturing in India, with an aim to drive over $1B in combined domestic production and exports,” tweeted Robbins after meeting the prime minister. The company is also opening a manufacturing unit in Tamil Nadu, and is aiming to recruit round 1200 employees in India in the initial phase.
What Cisco aims to do on the generative AI front
Robbins said that while generative AI was certainly on the company’s agenda, they were going slow on it and taking time to understand the possible implications of the technology on privacy and customer data. Researchers at Cisco are working on creating their own propriety language model while also advocating ethical and responsible use of generative AI, he added. However, he also stated that Generative AI has various use cases that are transforming customer services. Therefore, creating AI assistants that could interact with customers as a security operations agent as well as make recommendations is something the company is working towards.