When LTTS decided to build an R&D centre for digital engineering solutions for North American customers, it found a supportive tech ecosystem in Toronto Toronto, Ontario recently saw the expansion of India’s L&T Technology Services (LTTS). This US$1-billion digital engineering consultancy, design, development and testing company boasts 21,400 employees spread across 20 global design centers, 28 global sales offices and 90 innovation labs. It expanded its North American operations with a new office in Ontario in early November 2022. Ontario has become a desirable location for expanding Indian technology firms in recent years, with Infosys, HCL, Tata Consultancy Services and Zoho establishing delivery centres and innovation hubs in the province. Supportive tech ecosystem in Ontario When LTTS decided to build a research and development centre for its North American-based customers, it found a supportive tech ecosystem in Toronto. Toronto, [Ontario] has developed a rich ecosystem of colleges, universities and other employers where we can find the skilled workers we need. – Amit Chadha, CEO and Managing Director at LTTS “We needed an ecosystem that would allow us to find and leverage the engineering talent we need, where there are robust infrastructures relevant to the industries we operate in and where there’s a culture of innovation,” says Amit Chadha, CEO and managing director at LTTS. In Toronto, Chadha says LTTS plans to focus initially on developing digital solutions—such as railway engineering—for transportation companies, including global aerospace and major rail enterprises. The new centre will specialize in such solutions as rail track defect detection, advanced mobility, digital asset management, digital flyboard, sensors and communication systems. The multinational firm tackles issues facing numerous industry sectors, including transportation, manufacturing, technology and life sciences. It engineers transformative solutions that range from microchips, firmware and software to electrical controls, smart building infrastructure and plant operations. “We’ve developed digital twins for plants. We’ve worked on chips used in cryptocurrency mining, industrial IoT that leveraged the wingtips of a plane, and facial recognition software. We even have our own intellectual property file on artificial intelligence for chest X-ray readings and on robotic arms that provide training on how to do remote surgery,” says Chadha. The best engineering talent To achieve its goal of hiring more than 100 engineers over the next two years in Toronto, LTTS plans to tap into the deep pool of tech talent in Ontario, where almost half of all Canadian IT workers live and where 63,500 STEM students graduate each year. The University of Toronto ranks among the world’s top 20 universities, while the University of Waterloo—located just west of Toronto—produces graduates who are the second most frequently hired by Silicon Valley companies. “We’re looking for the best engineering talent, primarily with a focus on AI and digital products, digital manufacturing and sustainability,” says Chadha. “Toronto has developed a rich ecosystem of colleges, universities and other employers where we can find the skilled workers we need.” A welcoming place with a dynamic culture The high standard of living in Toronto and the rest of the province also makes it easier to bring in talent from other parts of the world. While Toronto may be a big city, it has the warmth of a smaller, tight-knit community, says Chadha. “I was impressed with how welcoming people are in Toronto,” he says. “I was also amazed at the city’s dynamic, hi-tech vibe and with what’s happening in Ontario around electric vehicles. The big build-out of that sector will be beneficial to the work we’ll be doing here.” Ontario’s well-established telecommunication and transportation industries present opportunities for collaboration, says Chadha. While LTTS has not yet identified any partnerships, Chadha says Ontario’s International Trade and Investment Offices have already connected him and his team with numerous companies and programs in the city and province. Close to major North American markets In the first quarter of 2022, LTTS launched a strategy to nearshore its research, design and development operations. It opened centres in France and Poland to serve customers in Europe before setting its sights on North America. Proximity to major markets on the continent is another reason why LTTS chose to build in Toronto. “We did find Toronto’s location to be an advantage because we have customers close by—Canadian clients in Toronto and other parts of Canada, and in the United States,” says Chadha. “What I also find nice about being in Toronto is that you can get to virtually any destination in the city in under 45 minutes. You can’t say that about a lot of other big cities.” As a company intent on engineering change through transformative technologies across industries, LTTS found its strategic location, rich with tech talent and a supportive tech ecosystem in Toronto, Ontario. Grow your business in Ontario’s vibrant technology ecosystem.