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The Indian IT-BPO industry crossed a magical figure of US$ 100 billion in revenues in 2012 and improves its market share in the global sourcing space. While this is no small achievement, the last couple of years have been challenging for the Indian BPOs, from the standpoint of growth. The BPO industry is likely to grow at around 11-14% in the near term

However, there is significant opportunity in offshoring of back-office tasks. Offshore penetration levels are estimated to be 11-13%, while it is in upper thirties for the IT services industry. When we look at the growth rates of top 10 BPOs in India over a three year period, very interesting facts emerge. The fastest three, in terms growth rates have grown 18% points faster than the remaining seven. Therefore the question to ask is that what will it take for the Indian BPO players to accelerate growth? In the last five years, industry has oriented itself to be more vertically aligned to be closer to the customers and embed deeper domain capabilities in the processes. There are also signs of innovation in the operating model i.e. non linear delivery models, outcome based pricing, transformational offshoring and platforms based services.

As we look ahead in 2013 and 2014, the macroeconomic picture is not likely to very different from today. Therefore, it is critical to plan and make meaningful changes on four dimensions to drive growth – (i) developing new product and services; (ii) building a robust sales engine; (iii) using operations and delivery excellence to drive growth; and (iv) growing inorganically through systematic M&A route.

Keeping this theme in mind, E18, the events arm of Network 18, is organising a 2-day forum titled "BPO INDIA FORUM 2013" on the 5th and 7th June 2013. At the conference, we hope to discuss the opportunities and challenges that are ahead of us.