Frost opens Global Innovation Center of Excellence in Iskandar
By Digital News Asia August 29, 2012
- To create 830 global knowledge economy jobs by 2020
- Five Centers of Excellence to serve Frost needs globally
CONSULTING and market research company Frost & Sullivan has opened its Global Innovation Center (GIC) of Excellence in the Iskandar Malaysia economic development hub in the southern Malaysian state of Johor.
In a previous interview with Digital News Asia, Manoj Menon, Frost partner and Asia Pacific managing director, said the total investment over the period to 2020 will be in the high hundreds of million ringgit.
Frost Global president and managing partner Aroop Zutshi (pic) believes that the development of the GIC will be a real game-changer for the future of the company.
Frost, which was established in 1962, describes itself as the world leader in ‘growth consulting’ and the integrated areas of technology research, market research, economic research, corporate best practices, corporate training, competitive intelligence and corporate strategy.
The GIC is the result of a strategic collaboration with the Multimedia Development Corporation (MDeC) and Iskandar Investment Bhd (IIB) that was announced by Malaysian Prime Minister Datuk Seri Najib Tun Razak during the Iskandar Malaysia fifth anniversary celebration late last year.
Aroop, who flew in from the United States for the occasion, declared: “Our goal is to create new knowledge-based activities and develop specialized skills that will support Malaysia’s goal to be a high-value, high-income nation by 2020.”
Frost Malaysia currently has 120 employees in Kuala Lumpur and aims to add another 830 in Iskandar by 2020. Its KL office covers nine major industries across 18 countries in Asia Pacific, the company said in a statement.
It is also the company’s largest office in South-East Asia. Globally it has 1,500 analysts and consultants and is headquartered in Mountain View, California.
“The GIC in Iskandar will serve Frost’s global operations and offices, providing opportunities for local employees to work on global projects. We are committed and invested to effectively contribute and bring new competencies and skill sets into the country,” said Manoj (pic).
“We are constantly on the lookout for local talents to join us and the opening of our GIC will allow us to cultivate these talents. With our presence in Iskandar, we will be able to support our clients down south better and we look forward to a more integral role with the country, government and industry,” he added.
MDeC chief executive officer Datuk Badlisham Ghazali noted that Frost has had more than 10 years of experience in Malaysia and is a part of the MSC Malaysia initiative. “MSC Malaysia welcomes companies who continue to look at Malaysia for future growth and bring new competencies and skill sets into the country.
“One example is the digital media COE which will see content being developed in new formats for different applications,” he added.
The digital media COE is one of five centers of excellence, each of which will drive a unique value proposition for Frost. The other four COEs are focused on consulting, innovation, growth innovation leadership university and financial.
“As we look into the future we believe our customers will consume our content in completely new ways. Most of this will be in formats such as video. The digital media COE will help drive the delivery, formatting, editing of all content developed globally,” said Manoj.
On the need to support clients down south, he told DNA that the region was developing very rapidly.
“Some of the world’s leading companies are setting up their operations in Johor and Iskandar. We will be amongst the first global companies in our business to have an office in this region to support these clients.
“These clients will be other tenants in Iskandar as well as large local companies such as Johor Corp, local government – all in addition to global clients at Iskandar, which will be the primary business,” Manoj added.
Key clients of Frost in Malaysia include a mix of multinationals, local conglomerates and government agencies across all major industries, the company said.
They include MIDA, MDeC, MIMOS, Malaysia Debt Ventures Bhd, Toyota, Honda, Perodua, Proton, DRB-Hicom, Edaran Otomobil Nasional, Telekom Malaysia, Goldman Sach, Merrill Lynch, Sime Darby, Felda Holdings, Cisco, Oracle, Scomi Group, Petra Group, Pantai Hospitals and Pfizer.
Iskandar Regional Development Authority (IRDA) chief executive Datuk Ismail Ibrahim said the inauguration of the GIC was a development to be celebrated.
“Aligned with our vision to create Iskandar Malaysia as the first choice to invest, work, live and play, we are confident that the presence of Frost in the Iskandar Malaysia eco-system will be an impetus for further growth in the business services sector and lead to many more high value employment opportunities here,” he said.