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plans to invest $6 billion in India over the next three years, CEO Samuel Palmisano said on Tuesday.

Speaking before 10,000 IBM employees in Bangalore, India -- and via satellite to thousands of other employees in Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata and Pune -- Palmisano said IBM is tripling its investment in the country. Indian President Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam was also present at the meeting.

"If you are not here in India, making the right investments and finding and developing the best employees and business partners, then you won't be able to combine the skills and expertise here with skills and expertise from around the world, in ways that can help our clients be successful," Palmisano said. "I'm here to say that IBM is not going to miss this opportunity."

Palmisano said the $6 billion "will ensure that we make the most of the opportunities to grow this marketplace, while it also enables IBM to fulfill its vision to become a globally integrated company."

Among other plans, IBM will open a new service delivery center in Bangalore that will better-automate IT services, open a telecommunications research and innovation center at its India Research Lab for its telecommunications clients and add staff at its specialized software and services lab in Bangalore.

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Just last week, IBM announced that its subsidiary, IBM Daksh has grown from 6,000 employees to 20,000 in two years. In total, IBM India has 43,000 employees.

And the company isn't alone in its pursuit of India's talented and cheaper workforce.


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opening a new facility in Pune. Meanwhile, Indian IT services firms are also

vying for talented staff.

IBM shares rose 35 cents, or 0.4%, to $79.41 in afternoon trading on Tuesday.