A coalition of Indian-American business owners headquartered in Howard County is expanding into an office building it purchased on Centre Park Drive near Route 108 in Columbia.
The growth of Intercontinental Export Import, an international plastic recycling firm, and Prism Microsystems, a software security firm that has 12 facilities worldwide, could together add up to 80 new jobs in the county during the next year, Howard County Executive Ken Ulman announced at a news conference in the firms' jointly owned headquarters building. Grand-opening festivities are planned at 10:30 a.m Saturday.
Ulman showed slides of his February trip to Bangalore, India, where the two firms also do business, as a way of spotlighting the growing business connections he hopes to solidify between the county and India.
"We need to set up a permanent infrastructure to let people [in India] know this is a place to invest," Ulman said.
Saurabh Naik, president of IEI and a county resident, said his firm is growing to include a wider range of recycling and will soon begin rendering discarded carpeting into two forms of plastic for reuse, instead of allowing it to be buried in landfills.
A.N. Ananth, CEO of Prism, which plans to add 30 jobs this year, said that business involving India is not just outsourcing jobs from the United States but can adds jobs both places.
"Outsourcing doesn't mean there has to be a loser. It is a flat world and getting flatter," Ananth said.
He added that "Howard County acts as an excellent gateway for international business," noting the proximity to Washington, BWI Marshall Airport, and the county's quality of life.