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Lehman's collapse to trigger a bidding fight among Indian firms

Saheer Karimbayil
Wednesday, October 1, 2008
Saheer Karimbayil
The collapse of the U.S. investment banker Lehman Brothers has triggered an unexpected competition among some of the Indian IT firms. Outsourcing firms like Wipro Technologies, Genpact, and Copal Partners and IT service firm Satyam Computer are gearing up to bid for the Indian back-office unit of Lehman, which has filed for bankruptcy protection.

Some investment banking sources, requesting anonymity, said that Wipro and Copal had been eyeing at opportunities in financial business process outsourcing and the Lehman unit has become a convenient target.

Satyam's plan to buy Lehman's back office operations in India, however, has not been officially confirmed. While Wipro declined to comment, concerned people at Copal Partners could not be reached for any inputs. Reports say that Genpact, the country's largest BPO firm in terms of revenue and headcount, has been looking to acquire captives and niche companies in India for sometime now.

Lehman has already asked over 1,000 employees at its Mumbai unit, which does equity research and analytics support for its mergers and acquisitions business, to leave by the end of September.
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