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Sun pumps up overseas outsourcing plans

Sun pumps up overseas outsourcing plans

Sun is scaling back its vaunted Silicon Valley engineering group and expanding its facilities around the world to save on costs.

The company said Friday it would grow facilities in Bangalore, Beijing, St. Petersburg and Prague. Published reports said the company isn't pulling out of Santa Clara but won't be hiring much more there for the time being.

The ability to quickly hire a large number of programmers in India and other low-cost locations justified the company's plan to consolidate its worldwide research staff in those places, Sun said.

The announcement follows another outsourcing move the company made recently. Sun said was outsourcing its internal information technology team to Computer Sciences in a contract worth US$360 million.

Such moves have enabled Sun to reduce its staff to about 30,000, from about 43,000 four years ago.

Simultaneously, the company has looked to bolster it service offerings and recently finalized its acquisition of SevenSpace, an IT services company that will expand the server maker's managed services by providing expertise beyond Sun's hardware and Solaris operating system.

In the past, Sun's remote services have centered primarily on Solaris-based systems. By integrating the SevenSpace technology into its offerings, Sun now will be able to offer customers support on competing operating systems such as HP-UX, IBM AIX, Microsoft Windows and Red Hat Linux, Sun executives say.

SevenSpace provides remote system monitoring and management for applications including SAP, Oracle e-business suites, PeopleSoft and Siebel; databases including Oracle and Microsoft SQL Server; operating systems including Solaris, Windows and Linux; and network devices.

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