On November 3, global chipmaker Intel announced a collaboration with eight homegrown Electronics Manufacturing Services (EMS) companies and Original Design Manufacturers (ODMs) to manufacture laptops in India, at a time when the Indian government is already pushing the ‘Make in India’ initiative by imposing import restrictions on laptops and PCs.

Among the eight manufacturers are Bhagwati Products, Dixon Technologies India, Kaynes Technology India, Optiemus Electronics, Panache Digilife, Smile Electronics, Syrma SGS Technology, and VVDN Technologies. Some of them will be producing laptops for the first time, and with Intel’s technical know-how and worldwide footprint, they will be able to provide both nationally and globally.

Under this collaboration, Intel will be sharing its expertise to facilitate the production of complete entry-level laptops, which includes utilizing state-of-the-art SMT lines, setting up a quality control process for components, and even benchmarking finished products. Intel also provided support to ODMs spanning both Semi Knocked Down (SKD) and Completely Knocked Down (CKD) processes,” the company said.

Rajeev Chandrasekhar, Union Minister of State for Electronics and IT, Skill Development and Entrepreneurship said, “I am very pleased that global organizations like Intel are partnering with India, helping to build and catalyze the electronics manufacturing ecosystem for laptops and compute. This aligns with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s vision to drive India’s Digital Economy to $1 trillion and enable the electronics manufacturing ecosystem to contribute $300 billion by 2025-26.

It is our Prime Minister’s determined goal that the Indian Electronics Ecosystem should have deep and broad capabilities and that Indian Electronics Manufacturing Companies should grow, scale, and expand their footprint as trusted players in the Electronics Global Value Chains,” he added.

Santhosh Viswanathan, VP & MD, India Region, Intel, “The collaboration between Intel and the Indian manufacturing ecosystem marks a pivotal moment for the Indian electronics industry. Intel has been the fundamental enabler of several electronic ecosystems across the world, and we are excited about fueling the same in India…By enabling the laptop manufacturing process – from surface mount technology assembly to finished product – we are not only meeting the demands of the Make in India initiative but also contributing to the technological progress of the nation.

In August 2023, Intel’s general manager for APAC and Japan, Steve Long, said that India is one of the APAC region’s fastest-growing markets. 

While the company is not looking to get into building semiconductor plants in India, Long had told Moneycontrol that “India is fast becoming an alternative for a globally diversified resilient supply chain, not only in the semiconductor industry but in any industry. I think it’s never too late for that.”

This news comes only a few weeks before Intel’s India Tech Ecosystem Summit in November.