Cisco eyes mass exodus of executives to India

US networking giant Cisco has implemented a program involving the shifting of key executives in India, an Associated Press said.

The Associated Press report cited Cisco executive Wim Elfrink, who has handled assignments from Holland to France, Italy, Switzerland and the US.

But his latest promotion will take the Dutch polyglot far from his Western comfort zone, the report said.
As the chief globalization officer at Cisco, Elfrink is taking his wife, two daughters and the family dog from suburban Silicon Valley to Bangalore, India.

Elfrink, who reports directly to Cisco CEO John Chambers, is the vanguard of one of the tech industry's most ambitious globalization campaigns, the report said.

The 50,000-person company wants 20% of senior managers working at the proposed Globalization Center in Bangalore by 2010.  

The executives will be a mixture of rising stars from San Jose and Bangalore and talent plucked from acquisitions and competitors worldwide.

International business experts say Cisco's executive migration is a shrewd move that should give high-ranking employees critical insight into one of the world's fastest growing economies.

The executive migration at Cisco, the Silicon Valley's most richly valued company, based on market capitalization, signals that offshoring has evolved from cost arbitrage to strategic imperative. Other companies will likely mirror Cisco's strategy, analysts, quoted by the report said.