Video-conferencing platform Zoom announced on Wednesday (16 December) that it will set up a new research and development (R&D) centre in Singapore where it will hire hundreds of key engineering staff.
In a statement today, Zoom said that the launch of the Singapore-based R&D hub represents its move to develop “leading communications technology in multiple locations globally”.
“The center will play a vital role as a source of innovation for Zoom, leveraging some of Singapore’s most talented professionals,” Zoom said.
Zoom will also expand its co-located data centre in Singapore by doubling its data centre capacity to ensure Zoom’s superior quality of experience, security, and reliability to its users across the Asia-Pacific.
“This commitment represents a growing strategic investment in the country, where Zoom has already had a presence for 2 years,” the statement read.
This expansion into Singapore, said Zoom, will supplement its existing R&D centres in the US, India, and China, as well as support Zoom’s engineering leadership in its headquarters in San Jose, California.
Noting that Singapore was selected for its “exceptional engineering talent”, Zoom said it has already begun recruiting engineers in the area and “looks forward to selecting office space as pandemic-related remote work subsides”.
President of Product and Engineering for Zoom, Velchamy Sankarlingam, pointed out that Singapore is “pro-business, ranks as one of the friendliest countries to set up a company, and continues to be a favorite for regional headquarters” as it boasts exceptional talent, strong infrastructure, and is a perfect gateway for engaging the wider Asia-Pacific region.
“We plan to immediately hire employees, leveraging Singapore’s highly-educated engineering talent pool. Our new R&D center and data center will play a critical role in Zoom’s continued international growth,” he noted.
Meanwhile, Managing Director of the Singapore Economic Development Board (EDB), Kai Fong Chng, said that he is thrilled that “Zoom will be partnering with Singapore to set up an R&D center to explore possibilities”.
Singapore launches new Tech.Pass to attract global tech talent
Earlier in November, the EDB announced that it will launch a new work pass called Tech.Pass, which aims to “attract founders, leaders and technical experts with experience in established or fast-growing tech companies” despite the Government’s move to increase the minimum salary requirement for Employment Passes (EPs) and S Passes.
According to EDB on 12 November, Tech.Pass holders will have the flexibility to participate in activities such as starting and operating a business, being an investor, employee, consultant or director in one or more Singapore-based companies, mentoring start-ups and lecturing at local universities.
“This is part of Singapore’s multi-pronged approach to develop a strong base of technology companies and talent to ensure Singapore remains globally competitive. This will also create more opportunities for local tech talent to work in globally competitive teams alongside top tech talent from all over the world,” EDB’s statement read.
Commenting about the new work pass, Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong on 17 November said that he hoped the newly-launched work pass can help Singapore attract “highly accomplished” tech individuals as the country needs more of such talent.
Although the local tech talent pool is growing, Singapore needs to continue bringing in mid-to-senior levels professionals from foreign countries in order to build world-class teams, grow the industry as well as handle urgent issues, Mr Lee said.
However, Singaporeans have to be assured that they are treated fairly and that companies are only bringing in foreign professionals whose experience Singaporeans could learn from, he stressed.