GitHub has launched an Indian subsidiary as it looks to capitalize on recent growth in the country.
The code-hosting platform, which was acquired by Microsoft for $7.5 billion in 2018, said that India is home to its third-largest community of developers and has seen 22% growth in the past year, with a 75% increase in public repositories.
Today’s announcement comes nearly a year after GitHub CEO Nat Friedman revealed that it would be making “major investments” in India, and would build a local office from the ground up.
India is our 3rd largest community on @github, and we’re making major investments there — starting with a GM to build our office from the ground up. We’re looking for an entrepreneurial, experienced leader who understands developers.
More details here: https://t.co/dBwSfJashO.
— Nat Friedman (@natfriedman) April 19, 2019
With its new subsidiary, called GitHub India Private Limited, both GitHub and Microsoft will be better positioned to broaden their appeal to developers across the country. But this also fits into a broader trend that has seen all the big tech technology giants, including Facebook and Google, go all-in on their quest to target the so-called “next billion” internet users. On the flip side, however, India has also been introducing sweeping changes in terms of how foreign companies operate in the country, including how they handle and store Indian user data and other “big tech” regulatory oversight.
Ultimately, having a local Indian business makes a great deal of sense for any company looking to capitalize on what could prove a lucrative market.
“As the third-largest group of active developers on GitHub, Indian developers are truly building the future of software,” noted GitHub’s chief operating officer Erica Brescia, in a blog post. “In building out a local team in India, our goal is to create stronger relationships with developers and support open source development across developers, maintainers, and enterprises.”
Spearheading the new unit will be general manager Maneesh Sharma, who previously held roles at Adobe and SAP. And in the coming months, they will hire for positions across engineering, community, sales and marketing, and more.
It’s also worth noting that India is already an attractive hub for many big tech companies to house their overseas engineering offices, due in part to the growing number of developers. Indeed, Uber launched an engineering center in Bengaluru back in 2016, and a report from last year indicated that it was preparing to make India its main developer hub outside of San Francisco, with plans to increase its technical staff in the country from around 600 to 1,000 throughout 2020.
“India is also home to one of the largest communities of student developers in the world,” Brescia continued. “Investing in the future of open source by empowering students is key to our efforts to support the amazing developer ecosystem in India.”
As part of its launch, Brescia said that GitHub Education is expanding its grant program to students across the country, promising awards of up to $1,000 for hackathon events.
“We’re passionate about supporting the next generation of developers and we’re eager to help more student communities come together to learn and build on GitHub,” Brescia added.
Meanwhile, reports also emerged last month that GitHub was looking to launch a subsidiary in China too,