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February 15, 2007

Farnborough partners Aero India 2007, South Asia's biggest air show

Birds of different kinds flew in from across the world to India's silicon hub to flaunt their air power at Aero India 2007, the international aviation exposition held at the Yelahanka base of the Indian Air Force (IAF) in Bangalore from February 7 to 11.

Organised by the Department of Defence Production in association with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) and U.K.'s Farnborough International Ltd, the Aero India, in its sixth edition, is now South Asia's biggest air show. Farnbourough is a subsidiary of the Society of British Aerospace Companies (SBAC), which led the British presence of some 50 representatives at the show.

Some 30 British companies participated at the show, including Rolls Royce, BAE Systems, Eurofighter, MBDA, Smiths and Cobham. Rolls-Royce, incidentally, celebrates the 75th anniversary of its partnership with the Indian aerospace industry this year.

Dedicated to global aerospace and aviation business activity - from suppliers to aircraft manufacturers; technology providers to services - the show allowed the aviation and aerospace industry to promote and showcase their products and services in India - which boasts of one of the fastest growing commercial aviation sectors in the world.

The IAF, too, is billed to be eyeing purchases worth some $35 billion over the next few years as it modernises its fleet by inducting the latest fighter and transport aircraft, according to a study conducted by India Strategic magazine.

» Continued on page 2

1st IISS-MEA Foreign Policy Dialogue held in London

The First International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS)-Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) Foreign Policy Dialogue took place on February 5, at the IISS, London. The Keynote Address was delivered by the leader of the MEA delegation, Ambassador Arif S. Khan, Additional Secretary (Public Diplomacy), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.

The Keynote Address was delivered by the leader of the MEA delegation, Ambassador Arif S. Khan, Additional Secretary (Public Diplomacy), Ministry of External Affairs, Government of India.

This was followed by an address by Adam Thomson, Director, South Asia and Afghanistan, Foreign and Commonwealth Office, U.K.

The first session on 'Growing Asian Economies: Challenges and Opportunities' examined the unprecedented simultaneous rise of two economies in Asia with a focus on global energy and environmental issues; India's infrastructure, agricultural and manufacturing challenges and opportunities; and prospects for economic growth.

» Continued on page 2

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Oxford Union debate

On February 8 the High Commissioner Kamalesh Sharma spoke at the debate in the Oxford Union on the subject 'This House Believes that the Sun is Setting on the West'. The High Commissioner had been invited earlier also to participate in a debate on the theme of the rise of the East.

TCS is best IT services provider

Tata Consultancy Services (TCS) topped the list of top 10 best-performing IT services providers worldwide as rated by Global Services, a specialised publication for IT businesses. Indian companies dominated the list with Cognizant Technologies occupying second position followed by Infosys Technologies, HCL Technologies, Neoris and Patni Computer System.

The 7th spot was occupied by MindTree Consulting of Bangalore, followed by Politec, Satyam Computers Service and Wipro Technolgies.

The top ranking for both Leaders in Human Capital Development and Best Performing BPO providers went to Genpact, and Hinduja TMT was selected as the Best Performing Global Call Center Provider. The honour for the Best Performing Managed Services Providers went to Affiliated Computer Services of the United States.

While Polaris Software Labs, with delivery centers in India, led the list of the Top 10 Specialty Application Development Providers, the Top Engineering Services Provider slot went to Patni Computer Systems.

India accounts for the largest number of companies among the top 100 with 36 finding the coveted slots and is followed closely by United States with 32 companies. Together India and the United States cornered 68 of the 100 slots.

Eight Indians in top VCs' list

Eight Indians figure in this year's Forbes Midas List, which ranks the top 100 deal-makers in technology and life sciences based on the exit valuations of the companies they have taken public or sold in the past five years.

The eight are: At 4th rank, Ram Shriram; Arjun Gupta (37); Parag Saxena (38); Rob Soni (42); Pramod Haque (52); Navin Chaddha (58); Srinivas Akkaraju (84); and Ravi Mhatre (95).

Last year, 460 venture-backed firms were sold or taken public for a total of $35 billion, the best year for cash-outs since 2000. Venture firms raised $25 billion in new money last year. In the past three years, the length of a typical investment cycle, they have raised $75 billion.

The Internet continues to dominate the Midas List rankings, thanks to Google's meteoric rise since its initial public offering in 2004 - its stock went from a market capitalisation of $27 billion on its first trading day to $150 billion today - and video site YouTube's $1.65 billion acquisition by Google in November.

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