Pure Storage inaugurated its R&D center recently in Bengaluru. The company is bullish on the India growth story and is investing substantially to leverage the opportunity. CXOToday speaks with Mr. Ajeya Motaganahalli, MD, India R&D, Pure Storage, to gain further insight into the company’s India growth strategy. He also discusses Pure’s India Skill Report and how India R&D center will be the hub of innovation in data storage technologies.
What is Pure Storage’s India growth strategy and how do you think your company will contribute to /align itself to larger government initiatives.
Pure Storage is not just focused on increasing market share and expanding its footprint in India, but is also very committed to India’s growth agenda, particularly the Make in India initiative. Our R&D center plays a key role in Pure Storage’s global innovation engine, an engine that has already contributed to a number of significant technological breakthroughs in the data storage and data management space. The engineers in our India center won’t just be contributing bits and pieces to Pure’s technology solutions, but will own and develop whole products that will be deployed globally. This is Make in India for the World.
Why did you pick Bangalore to set up your R&D center in India? Was availability of talent one of the reasons for the decision?
That was one of the deciding factors. We know there is talent all over India but as our talent report showed, Bangalore had the highest concentration of relevant skills and the right tech ecosystem that we were looking for.
In your report findings it is mentioned that India currently has 700k employed engineers with relevant skills in the Systems software and Data Management domain. Do you think India has the right kind of opportunities to offer them?
Definitely. Data management is one of the hottest emerging technologies. It may not catch as much attention as others but it is a foundational technology that cuts across all sectors. Ask any company what their most valuable resource is besides their employees and most will say it’s their data. So, whether the opportunity is with a technology provider like Pure Storage or in an end-user company, there are more than enough opportunities for these engineers.
Can you shed more light on the findings of the study (report with Zinnov) and its implications on the future of technology talent landscape in India.
I think the biggest takeaway is that academia needs to focus more on this space. As we’ve seen from the global and regional comparisons, India has a real opportunity to take a leadership role in the world so we need to ensure that the students are given the right training and industry exposure to give them the best opportunity to contribute to the next generation of data management talent.
Can you tell us the hiring number for Pure Storage’s R&D center in India for 2022-23?
As a policy we don’t share those numbers, but I can tell you that we are a growing team and that we are fast expanding our engineering base in Bangalore
What makes Indian tech engineering talent unique especially in the context of deep tech / R&D roles?
Apart from innate raw math and engineering ability, my take is that we are generally very methodical and assiduous. We see a problem and we figure out step by step how to solve it.
What are some of the key projects India R&D will work on? Could you elaborate on your focus areas?
There are some very exciting projects in the works already in the area of unstructured data and cloud-native app and data management.