Thales has been present in India since 1953. Headquartered in Noida, the company has other operational offices and sites in Bengaluru, Gurgaon, Hyderabad, Mumbai and Pune among others. Over 1800 employees are working with Thales and its joint ventures in India. Since the beginning, Thales has been playing an essential role in India’s growth story by sharing its technologies and expertise in Defence, Transport, Aerospace and Digital Identity & Security markets.
Supporting “Make in India”
India’s “Make in India” policy is fully supported by Thales. Thales strategy of developing its industrial footprint in India is in line with the Indian government’s policy of “Make in India” and of developing the defence base of the country. With this as the backdrop, Thales has formed various co-operative partnerships with public and private sector industries. It has been closely associated with HAL for over 50 years and has formed JVs with Samtel, BEL, L&T Technology Services and Reliance Aerostructure Limited. Also other cooperations in India include Bharat Dynamics Limited, Kalyani Group and MKU limited.
Thales’ “Go to India” approach
Further making the “Make in India” policy concrete and real, Thales has also been co-operating with the Indian private sector particularly large corporate players and SMEs to build transfer of technology and supply chain partnerships. Thales has extensive experience in liaising with numerous group supply chain partners to support the local industry in India and open up growth opportunities for them.
At the heart of Digital Transformation
The world today revolves around technology and more and more organisations are reshaping the way they do business with digital transformation. Thales actively supports its customers and offers high-level expertise in four key digital technologies: the Internet of Things/connectivity, Big Data, Artificial intelligence and Cybersecurity, and has accelerated its investments in these technologies.
The acquisition of US-based firm Guavus, among other companies, is structured around these investments. A pioneer in real-time Big Data analytics, Guavus’ technologies and expertise strengthen Thales’ ability to support the digital transformation of its customers. Guavus has strong roots in India with over 130 people in its competence centre in Gurgaon.
On 02 April 2019, Thales completed the acquisition of Gemalto, creating a global leader in digital identity and security. Employing 80,000 people in 68 countries, the larger Thales masters all the technologies underpinning the critical decision chain for companies, organisations and governments. The acquisition has also strengthened our presence in India and brought us closer to new customers in the country.
As the world becomes more connected, it also becomes more vulnerable. India’s cybersecurity ecosystem is rapidly developing and Thales’ e-security business has been actively working in this domain with partners to address the Indian market.
Thales’ Engineering Competence Centre in India
Thales has expanded its presence in India through the development of Group Engineering Competence Centre (ECC), reinforcing its position as a leader in all its markets. Thales actively supports its customers and offers high-level expertise in four key digital technologies: the Internet of Things (IoT)/ connectivity, Big Data, Artificial Intelligence and Cybersecurity, and has accelerated its investments in these technologies.
Engineering Competence Centre in Delhi National Capital Region: The ECC in Noida is focused on Digital Identity and Security business of Thales. Also, part of this centre, which is in Gurugram, is an extension of this line of business, with a specialization in managing real-time big data analytics. These two strengthen our ability to support the digital transformation of customers in aerospace, space, ground transportation, defence and security.
Engineering Competence Centre in Bengaluru: Launched in early 2019 in Bengaluru, the ECC has expanded Thales’ footprint in its core business areas and cemented its long-standing relationship with India. This ECC, the first of its kind in India, focuses on hardware, software and systems engineering capabilities for both the civil and defence sectors, serving global needs. Thales seeks to hire hundreds of talented engineers in India in the next three to five years for this Engineering Centre.
India was chosen as the location for these ECCs due to the existing ecosystem – its proximity to the market, competence in research and development and abundance of skilled engineers. Both the needs of the local market and export markets are catered for. We’re inventing the future, right here, right now.
Growing with Universities
Collaborating with the world’s most dynamic universities is a key aspect of innovation at Thales. In March 2018, Thales and Indian Institute of Technology, Madras signed an MoU for a jointly supervised PhD fellowship scheme. Thales has formed similar partnerships with the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, Indian Institute of Technology, Bombay, and Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi in October 2015, January 2016 and September 2016, respectively. Thales believes that such associations will play a great role in fostering an ecosystem for research and consequently securing innovations for tomorrow.
Socially responsible corporate
In June 2017, Thales Foundation and GeoHazards Society (GHS) launched first-of-its-kind school safety mobile application in India that allows school administrators to ‘write’ a School Disaster Management Plan (SDMP). Besides this, Thales has been supporting various other NGOs in India through local CSR initiatives and also group-level Foundation efforts. Some of them include Kutumbh Foundation, Jagriti, Protsahan, Samarpan Foundation, among others.
India represents a significant market for Thales in both civil and military sectors. The Group’s defence business is recognised as a reliable partner in all three branches of the Indian Armed Forces: Navy, Air Force and Army. Its equipment and systems have been selected for various types of platforms. In the civil domain, Thales has activities in transportation and civil aerospace.
Smart Safe Secure Skies, India
Thales had joined hands with Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce & Industry (FICCI) to organise an event on the theme ‘Smart Safe Secure Skies’ in October 2019 at the Le Meridien, New Delhi. The event was very successful as it focused on the civilian market, bringing together various key air space stakeholders to discuss and share views on how they see the evolution of air space safety and efficiency; how digital technologies and new products/services can impact air space safety and efficiency. Please click here to find more details.
Thales’ local partnerships and joint ventures (JVs) reinforce the company’s commitment to the country.
Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL): Thales has been working closely with HAL have for over 50 years. Thales has been providing high-end avionics to equip the platforms that HAL is designing. We will continue to develop our partnership with HAL through transfer of technology, when appropriate, to jointly address the growth of Indian Defence Aerospace market.
Bharat Electronics Limited (BEL): The JV company was incorporated in August 2014 as BEL-Thales Systems Limited. Thales holds 26% equity in the joint venture, while Bharat Electronics holds 74 % of the stake. The JV is dedicated to the design, development, marketing, supply and support of civilian and select military ground based radars for India and the Global markets. In March 2016, Thales and BEL-Thales Systems Limited (BTSL) signed a partnership agreement for the joint development of the PHAROS fire control radar for gun and missile systems. The jointly developed PHAROS system will cater to both domestic Indian and international market requirements. BTSL will also be undertaking the production of the LBREC – Low Band Receiver of the self-protection suite of the Rafale.
Samtel: Thales signed a JV agreement with Samtel in 2008 to locally develop and produce helmet mounted sights and displays, military avionic and airborne sensor systems for the defence market. Samtel Avionics Limited holds 74% of the stake and Thales 26%. The JV is fully operational and the facility is in Noida. The production of displays for the Mirage 2000 upgrade programme by this JV will pave the way for future opportunities to serve local and export markets.
L&T Technology Services: In June 2014, Thales and L&T Technology Services formed a JV with a view to develop software engineering activities in India, particularly in the avionics domain. L&T Technology Services purchased 74% of the equity capital of Thales Software India Pvt. Ltd. By retaining 26% equity stake, Thales helps the company to develop the latest trends in the avionics industry, one of its core businesses.
Reliance Aerostructure Limited: In June 2017, Thales and Reliance Aerostructure announced their intent to form a JV with the proposed shareholding of 49% and 51% respectively. Leveraging Thales’ offset commitment as part of Rafale Contract, the JV is to develop Indian capabilities to integrate and maintain Radar and Electronic Warfare sensors. The JV will develop skills and activity in the Special Economic Zone of Mihan-Nagpur together with an Indian supply chain for the manufacturing of microwave technologies and high performance airborne electronics.