TCS is one of the operative subsidiaries of one of India's largest and oldest conglomerate company, the Tata Group or Tata Sons Limited, which has interests in areas such as energy, telecommunications, financial services, manufacturing, chemicals, engineering, materials, government and healthcare.
It began as the "Tata Computer Centre", for the company Tata Group whose main business was to provide computer services to other group companies. F C Kohli was the first general manager. JRD Tata was the first chairman, followed by Nani Palkhivala.
One of TCS' first assignments was to provide punched card services to a sister concern, Tata Steel (then TISCO). It later bagged the country's first software project, the Inter-Branch Reconciliation System (IBRS) for the Central Bank of India. It also provided bureau services to Unit Trust of India, thus becoming one of the first companies to offer BPO services.
In the early 1970s, Tata Consultancy Services started exporting its services. The company pioneered the global delivery model for IT services with its first offshore client in 1974. TCS's first international order came from Burroughs, one of the first business computer manufacturers. TCS was assigned to write code for the Burroughs machines for several US-based clients. This experience also helped TCS bag its first onsite project - the Institutional Group & Information Company (IGIC), a data centre for ten banks, which catered to two million customers in the US, assigned TCS the task of maintaining and upgrading its computer systems.
In 1981, TCS set up India's first software research and development centre, the Tata Research Development and Design Center (TRDDC). The first client-dedicated offshore development center was set up for Compaq (then Tandem) in 1985.
In 1989, TCS delivered an electronic depository and trading system called SECOM for SIS Sega Inter Settle, Switzerland. It was by far the most complex project undertaken by an Indian IT company. TCS followed this up with System X for the Canadian Depository System and also automated the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE). TCS associated with a Swiss partner, TKS Teknosoft, which it later acquired.
In the early 1990s, the Indian IT outsourcing industry grew tremendously due to the Y2K bug and the launch of a unified European currency, Euro. TCS pioneered the factory model for Y2K conversion and developed software tools which automated the conversion process and enabled third-party developers and clients to make use of it.
In 1999, TCS saw outsourcing opportunity in E-Commerce and related solutions and set up its E-Business division with ten people. By 2004, E-Business was contributing half a billion dollars (US) to TCS.
On 9 August 2004, TCS became a publicly listed company, much later than its rivals, Infosys, Wipro and Mahindra Satyam.
During 2005, TCS ventured into a new area for an Indian IT services company – Bioinformatics.
In 2008, the company went through an internal restructuring exercise that executives claim would bring about agility to the organization..
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Tata Research Development and Design Center
TCS established the first software research center in India, the Tata Research Development and Design Center, in Pune India in 1981.TRDDC undertakes research in Software Engineering, Process Engineering and Systems Research.
Researchers at TRDDC also developed Master Craft (now called TCS Code Generator Framework Model Driven Development software that can automatically create code based on a model of software, and rewrite the code based on the user's needs.
Research at TRDDC has also resulted in the development of Sujal, a low-cost water purifier that can be manufactured using locally available resources. TCS deployed thousands of these filters in the Indian Ocean Tsunami disaster of 2004 as part of its relief activities. This product has been marketed in India as Tata swach, a low...