LVIV — Swedish telecommunications giant Ericsson is opening a Research and Development office in Lviv, one of Ukraine’s the top three IT-cities alongside Kharkiv and Kyiv.
The branch, located in the city center, on Sholem Aleichem Street, is ramping up to employ nearly 200 programmers.
“The office will be developing software for telecom operators,” Ilya Kenigshtein, adviser to the Lviv’s Mayor for innovation and investment, told the UBJ.
The branch operates in the office of Ericpol, a Polish company which Ericsson bought last year after longstanding cooperation. Ericpol specializes software solutions for telecommunications, healthcare and machine to machine applications.
The R&D center will create solutions for fourth generation mobile communications and e-government, two priorities in Ukraine. The government is promoting open data, e-procurement, e-services and e-identification.
The Swedish company plans further expansion, opening of additional R&D centers in other Ukrainian cities. Headquartered in Stockholm, the telecommunications equipment giant has an annual turnover of $33 billion, employs 113,000 people in 180 countries, and holds about 40,000 patents.
Ericsson is the third large international company to invest in Lviv since 2015, following Japanese car manufacturer Fujikura and Czech business park developer CTP.
Kenigshtein said Ukrainian government representatives proposed to Hans Vestberg, Ericsson’s CEO, the opening of an office in Ukraine at the 2015 World Economic Forum in Davos.
“The Swedes, in their usual manner, took this proposal seriously and began to research on the infrastructure of different cities,” he said. “As a result, they chose Lviv. This was partly because Lviv’s office is a division of Ericpol, the partners of the Swedish company. Also Lviv is one of the most advanced cities in terms of IT infrastructure.”
Serhiy Kiral, head of Lviv’s investment office and a member of parliament, led talks with Ericsson. He said the company plans to hire up to 1,000 staff in Lviv.
“Ericsson will develop its Lviv office,” Kiral said. “It’s at the very least twice as cheap as in Poland.”
The IT industry is a development for Lviv.
The city has 15,000 IT specialists, 15% of the overall number throughout Ukraine. Annually, the IT industry is growing here by 20%.
According to the Lviv IT cluster, a community of leading local information technology companies, there are 60 IT specialists for every 1,000 residents in the city of 800,000 people.
For comments and news tips, please email UBJ Western Ukraine Correspondent Sasha Kharchenko at email@example.com
Photo Slider and Top: From this headquarters in Stockholm, Ericsson manages a telecommunications equipment empire of 113,000 employees, operating in 180 of the world’s 196 countries (supplied).
Photo: Ericsson opens branch in Lviv in the Sholom Aleichem Street office of Ericpol, a Polish company it bought last year. (Credit: Sasha Kharchenko).
Posted Feb. 3, 2017