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Cognizant starts trading on Nasdaq

March 06, 2007

Cognizant Technology Solutions team, Nasdaq officials and traders after the Opening Bell ringing ceremony at the Nasdaq, Times Square, New York on Monday. Cognizant rang the bell from a remote location in Chennai to signal the beginning of trading on the Nasdaq. Photo: Paresh GandhiIndian IT firm Cognizant Technologies Corporation started trading at the Nasdaq exchange in New York on March 5.

The company's chief executive officer Francisco D'Souza pressed a button in the company's techno complex in Chennai and a bell rang at Nasdaq to signal the beginning of trading. A large audience of traders and officials present counted the last ten seconds and burst into cheers as the bell rang and floor trading began.

The company was included in the Nasdaq-100 in 2004 and joined S&P 500 in November 2006 to become the first global offshore IT services firm to achieve this distinction.

Rajiv Khanna, the president of India-America Chamber of Commerce who co-hosted the event, said in honouring Cognizant, Nasdaq not only honours the great achievements of the company but it also recognises the hopes, dreams and aspirations of young Indian entrepreneurs.

"Some believe that India would be the third largest economy after the United States and China by 2050. But we at the Chamber believe that long before that time, India will be second largest economy, second only to the United States," Khanna said.

"Such progress is possible because of the inherent entrepreneurial skill of the Indian people and the great support of institutions like Nasdaq fueling such growth through access to key equity capital," he added.

Cognizant, around 60 per cent of whose business is outside India, is a global company whose annual revenue exceeded $1.4 billion last year. Its share value has gone up by 9600 per cent since it was first registered on Nasdaq.

D'Souza thanked the company's 40,000 workers and praised the transparency and professionalism of Nasdaq which he said enhanced the confidence of the shareholders.

The company uses its own on-site/offshore outsourcing model to provide applications management, development, integration and engineering, infrastructure management, business process outsourcing and related services.

Nasdaq, whose listing is heavy with technology companies, process nearly 20,000 transactions per second and 12 million trades per day.

"In many ways, the fact that we are opening the market from Chennai is representative of the globalisation and virtualisation that we are witnessing all around us. It would have been unthinkable a few years ago to open America's largest electronic stock market remotely and unimaginable to do so from about 10,000 miles away in India," D'Souza said in Chennai.

"Over the course of our association with Nasdaq, we have emerged as one of the fastest growing firms in our sector and gained recognition among the world's leading companies throughout membership in the Nasdaq 100 index and the S&P 500 Index," he added.

Charlotte Crosswell, president of Nasdaq International, termed Cognizant as a company of innovation and technological leadership.

"Nasdaq is proud to count you among our family of listed companies. Nasdaq remains dedicated to India and we look forward to strengthen our long established ties with the region," he said. -- PTI

(Above) Cognizant Technology Solutions team, Nasdaq officials and traders after the Opening Bell ringing ceremony at the Nasdaq, Times Square, New York on Monday. Cognizant rang the bell from a remote location in Chennai to signal the beginning of trading on the Nasdaq.

Photo: Paresh Gandhi



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