The GE India Technology Centre is General Electric’s largest integrated, multidisciplinary research and development centre. Gopichand (Gopi) Katragadda leads GE’s India Technology team of about 6,000 engineers and scientists. He has been with GE for 10 years. Prior to his current role, he held various leadership roles within GE including India leadership for energy engineering and GE Global Research. Proud of his team’s achievements, he tells Sudhir Chowdhary in a recent interaction that over the last decade, the work done by inventors at the centre has resulted in over 2,000 patents being filed by the parent company. Excerpts:
GE India Technology Centre was established in 2000. How has the journey been so far?
From a legal entity stand-point, we actually started on June 8, 1999. I remember it well because it is my birthday as well. The journey has been fantastic on many counts: First the team; the team that we have put together has been very productive. They are recognised globally in the respective areas that they work on. They produce products that are present globally and they produce products for India. I think this is one of the pillars that the organisation stands on—this is more a foundational pillar.
In terms of being able to take the GE processes and really excel at those; and also being able to contribute while we are shaping up as a new company—that has been a fantastic journey as well. When I say shaping up as a new company, I am talking about how we have moved from focusing only on bottom-line but on the top-line as well. So generating new revenues means generating new products for emerging markets as well. So we are a critical component of the strategy. We provide access not only to this country, but to the region in terms of understanding the voice of the customer and developing technology which will feed the voice of the customer effectively.
In the third piece of the journey, if you look at customer connect, the ability of the teams to deliver products based on the field knowledge, based on the understanding of what could go wrong when delivering at the customer location. Those are the things that make research and development real.
If you have the right team working and excelling and delivering new processes for the need and connected to the customer, the outcome has to be what we need which is intellectual property