Hyderabad: Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao on Wednesday urged Amazon to consider Hyderabad for its data centre operations as well, since the city not only has the required infrastructure and government support but is also not prone to earthquakes, thus making it a safe place to establish a data centre.
The Chief Minister also urged the company to set up an IT centre in the Uppal-Pocharam campus area. Home Minister Mohammad Mahmood Ali, who inaugurated Amazon’s largest campus in the city on behalf of the Chief Minister, read out Chandrashekhar Rao’s message in his absence. The Chief Minister, in his message, also pointed out that Amazon already had three business centres in Telangana having 3.2 million cubic feet storage capacity and now had opened its largest campus in the city.
Exports at new high
The Chief Minister said that in the last five years, Hyderabad had become the most preferred destination for investments with IT exports growing from Rs 52,000 crore in 2014 to Rs 1 lakh crore in 2019. The sector employs about six lakh persons and the IT department is looking to expand the investments to the eastern part of the city, he said.
Exactly three years and four months after laying the foundation stone, Amazon opened the largest owned building in Hyderabad. Spread over nine acres of land, the building has over 2.9 million sq ft and can accommodate 15,000 employees out of which 4,500 are already working out of the facility. The new campus is Amazon’s first owned office building outside the US and will add more talent to its existing employee base of 62,000 in India out of which one-third are in Hyderabad.
Present on the occasion were Jayesh Ranjan, Principal Secretary, IT and industries department, Telangana, Amit Agarwal, SV-P and country head, Amazon India and John Schoettler, V-P, Global Real Estate and Facilities, Amazon.
State govt lauded
Schoettler informed that about 19 million man hours and 2,000 people were involved in the construction and completion of the building. “The investor-friendly policies of the State government and the unwavering support we received, helped us in completing the project in record time,” he added.
Speaking about the speedy approval provided to the facility, Ranjan said that the building got approval in 11 days and is a test case for TS-iPass. “This was one of the first facility that got approval under the TS-iPass scheme. And while normally a facility of this nature takes 6-9 months to get all approvals from the urban development authority, the government gave the approval in 11 days flat,” he said.
Of the 2.9 million sq ft construction area, about 1.8 million sq ft is office space and the rest houses parking and recreational amenities. With this facility in place, Hyderabad is now home to large campuses of big companies, including Microsoft, Apple, Uber and others. The employees working out of this facility will be mostly involved in backend services, AWS teams, IT product development activities among other allied services.
Speaking about the exports component, Agarwal informed that through their global selling platform, they have exported goods worth $1 billion so far and are eyeing to cross $5 billion mark in the next three years.
Meanwhile, Jayesh Ranjan put forth a few requests and said Amazon should look at setting up a centre to encourage sellers from the field of textiles and handicrafts. He also sought Amazon’s larger role in the growing Artificial Intelligence (AI) and Machine Learning (ML) landscape in the city. He wanted the company to be an anchor in the AI/ML centre of excellence set up by the State government.