A little over a year ago, when I returned to BusinessWeek’s offices in New York from a reporting trip in India, I found a message on my voicemail from an editor at McGraw-Hill Books. She wanted to know if I would be interested in producing a book about the Indian tech industry. I had never written a non-fiction book before, but always figured I would some day. India was a hot topic, and I knew plenty about it because of my role as BusinessWeek’s software editor. So I began a journey that ended, symbolically, on Sept. 22 when a box containing 10 copies of my book, Bangalore Tiger, arrived at my office.
Bangalore Tiger is the story of the rise of the Indian tech industry. For simplicity and maximum impact, I decided tell the story through the microcosm of one company, Wipro Ltd. I could have chosen any of the top Indian software services companies, which include TCS, Infosys, and Wipro. They all have similar philosophies, strategies, and methods. I chose Wipro because it was most accessible.
The book is a mix of genres. It’s partly a guide for Western corporations who are considering outsourcing software writing, hardware engineering, call center operations, and the like to an Indian company. The book tells them what they’re in for. It’s also a management book. I detail the ideas, management techniques, and business processes that have allowed these companies to disrupt the $650 billion global tech services industry. Most broadly, it’s a human-interest story. Here’s a group of people in a formerly backwater country who have tapped the Internet and other technologies to level the playing field and change the rules of competition in one of the world’s most important industries. They have created a model for other entrepreneurs in other emerging economies.
Bangalore Tigers, the blog, is an effort to track and comment on the events and issues confronting the global tech services industry as the work of corporations is increasingly outsourced and distributed around the globe. I have been blogging for a couple of years on BusinessWeek Online’s TechBeat, but never really evolved into the type of blogger who engages in a conversation with readers. I hope to do a better job in Bangalore Tigers. I welcome your thoughts.