Amazon To Invest $12.7 Billion In Cloud Infrastructure In India
Amazon Web Services on Thursday announced plans to invest USD 12.7 billion in cloud infrastructure in India by 2030 as it looks to meet growing customer demand for cloud services in the country.
The planned investment in data centre infrastructure in India will support an estimated average of 1,31,700 full-time equivalent (FTE) jobs in Indian businesses each year, Amazon Web Services (AWS) — Amazon’s cloud computing unit — said in a statement.
These positions, including construction, facility maintenance, engineering, telecommunications and other jobs, are part of the data centre supply chain in India.
AWS said it plans to invest Rs 1,05,600 crore (USD 12.7 billion) in cloud infrastructure in India and added its long-term commitment in the country will reach Rs 1,36,500 crore (USD 16.4 billion) by 2030.
This follows AWS’ investment of Rs 30,900 crore (USD 3.7 billion) between 2016 and 2022 which will bring its total investment in India to Rs 1,36,500 crore (USD 16.4 billion) by 2030.
“This investment is estimated to contribute Rs 1,94,700 crore (USD 23.3 billion) to India’s total gross domestic product by 2030,” the statement said.
AWS added that its investment in India has a ripple effect on the local economy in areas such as workforce development, training and skilling opportunities, community engagement and sustainability initiatives.
The company has two data centre infrastructure regions in India — the AWS Asia Pacific (Mumbai) Region, launched in 2016, and the AWS Asia Pacific (Hyderabad) Region, launched in November 2022.
“The two AWS Regions are designed to provide Indian customers with multiple options to run workloads with even greater resilience and availability, securely store data in India, and serve end users with low latency,” it said.
AWS has invested more than Rs 30,900 crore in the AWS Asia Pacific (Mumbai) Region between 2016 and 2022. This included both capital and operating expenditures associated with constructing, maintaining and operating the data centres in that region.
It estimates that AWS’ overall contribution to India’s gross domestic product between 2016 and 2022 was more than Rs 38,200 crore (USD 4.6 billion), and the investment supported nearly 39,500 FTE jobs annually in Indian businesses.
“Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Digital India vision is driving (the) expansion of cloud and data centres in India,” Union Minister of State for Electronics and Information Technology Rajeev Chandrasekhar said in the statement.
The latest investment will catalyse India’s digital economy.
“MeitY is also working on a Cloud and Data Center Policy to catalyse innovation, sustainability, and growth of India Cloud,” the minister said.
Puneet Chandok, president of commercial business, AWS India and South Asia, said the planned investment will “help create more beneficial ripple effects, supporting India on its path to becoming a global digital powerhouse”.
The company observed that hundreds of thousands of its customers in India run their workloads on AWS to drive cost savings, accelerate innovation and increase speed time to market.
This includes government entities such as the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, public healthcare institutions such as the Aarogyasri Health Care Trust, large Indian enterprises such as Ashok Leyland, Axis Bank, HDFC Life and Titan, small and medium businesses such as Havmor, Qube Cinema and Narayana Nethralaya, well-known start-ups like BankBazaar, HirePro, M2P and Yubi, among others.
AWS also helps several Indian businesses build digital solutions locally that can be scaled globally through the AWS Partner Network (APN) where Indian partners can use programs, expertise and resources to build, market and sell customer offerings.
The APN in India includes organisations such as Minfy Technologies, Rapyder Cloud Solutions and Redington, AWS said.
(This story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)
GM, POSCO Future M to boost investment at battery materials plant in Canada – The Globe and Mail
General Motors Co GM-N and South Korea’s POSCO Future M said on Friday they will invest more to boost production at their chemical battery materials facility in Canada, taking their estimated total investment in the plant to over $1-billion.
The companies said the new investment includes an additional CAM and a precursor facility for local on-site processing of critical minerals.
The development comes a few days after the Canada’s federal government and the Quebec province each provided about C$150-million ($112-million) for the facility.
The companies last year established Ultium CAM joint venture, which is majority owned by POSCO Future M, and had initially invested about $327-million, according to media reports.
Their battery facility in Becancour, Quebec, will produce cathode active material (CAM) for electric vehicle (EV) batteries.
Canadian pension fund CDPQ puts brakes on China investment, Financial Times reports – Reuters
June 1 (Reuters) – Canada’s second-largest pension fund Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec (CDPQ) has stopped making private deals in China and will close its Shanghai office this year, the Financial Times reported on Thursday, citing people familiar with the matter.
The news follows a May 8 parliamentary hearing in which several Canadian pensions, including CDPQ, were asked about their relationship with China as bilateral political tensions have intensified.
CDPQ is leading its regional investment efforts from Singapore, the report said, noting that it still has business interests in China.
“We paused private investments for some time already — and have focused on liquid markets, which is the majority of our two per cent total portfolio exposure to China. We expect this trend to continue,” the newspaper quoted CDPQ as saying in a statement.
CDPQ confirmed the Shanghai office closure later this year, but declined to comment further.
The Financial Times in February reported that Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC has reduced private investments in China.
During the May hearing, Michel Leduc, a senior manager at the Canada Pension Plan Investment Board (CPPIB), said China was an “important source” for its portfolio.
“We recognize that any investment in China needs to be handled with care, sophistication, and an acute understanding of the current political and geopolitical environment,” Leduc said.
A CPPIB spokesperson declined to comment further on Thursday.
In May, Canada’s C$211.1 billion ($157.87 billion) British Columbia Investment Management Corporation (BCI) said it had reduced exposure in China and Hong Kong by about 15% over two years and paused direct investments in China.
“Our current exposure in China is less than 5% of the overall BCI portfolio, the majority of which is through public markets and via indexed funds,” the asset manager said.
In April Canada’s third largest pension fund, Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan (OTPP), also closed its China public equity investment team based in Hong Kong.
At the start of the year, OTPP said it was pausing future direct investments in private assets in China, citing geopolitical risk as a factor.
OTPP expects to name a new head of Asia-Pacific Private Capital Direct in the coming months to replace Raju Ruparelia who has left to pursue other opportunities, a spokesperson said by email.
($1 = 1.3372 Canadian dollars)
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Why Canada would benefit from 'direct index' investing – The Globe and Mail
Traditionally reserved for institutions and ultra-high net worth individuals, direct indexing is a hot topic for investors as technology advances and downward pressure on retail trading commissions have done much to democratize its access. In the United States, direct indexing strategies are expected to outpace the growth of both ETFs and mutual funds. In response, U.S.-based providers are scrambling to build, buy or partner to acquire the required capabilities to get in on the action, driving down the costs and required account minimums for investors. For Canadians, it’s worth getting a better understanding on what Direct Indexing is, and what we can expect for the future of these strategies north of the border.
As a brief overview, direct indexing amounts to personalization at scale. Similar to a traditional investment fund, direct indexing gives individual investors a way to get exposure to a broad segment of the investment market, such as an equity index. Unlike traditional funds, however, direct indexing involves individuals investing directly in the underlying securities (stocks or bonds that make up a larger index), instead of simply buying units of a fund. Investing in this way offers multiple benefits. First, there are a variety of tax strategies (most notably tax loss harvesting) made available by directly holding the individual securities, which can add a potential 1-3% after-tax return on an annual basis. Second, the investor would have near-full autonomy to incorporate their personal preferences for the purpose of excluding securities that do not align with their values or investment objectives. Consider an index that is made up of the 500 largest companies listed in the United States, when investing in this product the investor does not have the choice of what companies make up this portfolio, meaning they may be required to invest in companies that do not align with their values or investment objectives. However, by holding the underlying securities, these non-aligned stocks can be excluded from the investor’s portfolio. While traditional thematic ETFs and mutual funds provide generic options for investor choice, the opportunities for hyper-personalization inherent in direct indexing strategies are almost endless.
As a concept, direct indexing is not new. Sophisticated investors, such as institutions and wealthy investors, have long held the requisite buying power and influence to overlay all manners of unique constraints on their investment portfolios. However, technology advances that could handle significant scale coupled with reduced trading costs brought this concept into the hands of individual investors – the former made it possible for investment managers to offer direct indexing while the latter made it affordable for the retail market.
The seismic nature of this shift cannot be undersold. Consider an investment advisor seeking to satisfy the individual needs of their clients across 10,000 individual investment portfolios. They’d need to manually ingest a mountain of client-level information, go about buying into hundreds of thousands of individual securities and monitor all accounts to identify portfolios that require rebalancing when they drift out of alignment. Prior to the advances described above, this would be cost- and time-prohibitive. Direct indexing offers this high degree of personalization in an automated fashion that is feasible for the investment manager, while better serving individual client needs.
When compared to the U.S., Canada has been slower to internalize the required pre-conditions to support direct indexing, but the outlook is increasingly positive. Leading direct indexing technology-solution providers in the U.S. are expressing interest in Canada as an expansion target. Additionally, Canadian broker-dealers are exploring ways to enable zero commission trading at scale. Fractional shares, at one time considered more of a marketing gimmick, is also slowly finding its footing as firms are tapping into lower account balance investors that are seeking alternatives to traditional funds.
Beyond these structural considerations, it’s worth examining whether demand among Canadian investors will be sufficient to justify bringing direct indexing to the Canadian market. For instance, the main driver for adoption of direct indexing in the U.S. is the opportunity to capture additional after-tax returns through direct indexing’s optimization capabilities. However, given tax code differences in Canada related to the treatment of capital gains, the benefit provided from tax optimization strategies deployed on Canadian portfolios will likely be less than those experienced by our counterparts south of the border. That said, believers in the concept remain steadfast that the increase in personalization for Canadian investors will be enough to drive demand for direct indexing.
Direct indexing likely still has a place in the Canadian investment landscape, despite the differences between Canada and the U.S.. The first ‘Canadianized’ direct indexing solution made available to the mass-market will have to navigate Canada’s structural nuances; if done successfully, investors aim to significantly benefit by accessing institutional investment capabilities at a cost likely competitive with most Canadian mutual funds.
Michael Thomson is director, and Jeffrey Joynt a consultant, with Alpha Financial Markets Consulting
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