updated 4/29/2005 11:17:24 AM ET 2005-04-29T15:17:24

Computer-maker Dell will hire another 2,000 people by the end of the year to make India a hub for its software development and back-office work, its top executive said Friday.

“It has been a very exciting time here in India, running customer support and internal software development centers,” Dell Inc. Chief Executive Kevin Rollins told reporters in Bangalore, India’s technology hub.

Dell will increase its staff strength in India to 10,000 by January from nearly 8,000 at present, he said.

Less than two years ago, Round Rock, Texas-based Dell moved support for some customer calls back to the United States from Bangalore, citing “customer complaints.”

On Friday, Rollins said the November 2003 decision was due to the company’s internal management issues.

“Then, we were doing too much, too fast in too many places. We had to prioritize and refine,” he said.

Scores of Western companies have been cutting costs by shifting software development, engineering design and routine office functions to countries such as India, where English-speaking workers are plentiful and wages are low.

Dell runs three call centers in India, a product testing center for corporate customers and a global software development center.

“Over time, our Indian operation has grown in technical complexity and so we are making it a center of competency for software and support,” Rollins said.

Dell plans to open more offices in India to shift technology work and to tap India’s growing computer market, he said.

“As we move to increase our revenues to $80 billion in three to four years’ time, our growth will increasingly come from outside the U.S.,” he said.

Dell employs a total of 53,000 people and its revenue reached $49.2 billion in the fiscal year ending in January 2005.

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