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Press about Auriga

Apr 13, 2005

Gorbachev touts Russian IT talent

Mass High Tech,
Ethan Forman

The Massachusetts Software Council and about 800 people yesterday welcomed former Soviet leader Mikhail Gorbachev with the Russian national anthem and several standing ovations in the ballroom of the Boston Marriott Copley Place.

The meeting highlighted Russian IT companies’ growing desire to develop software for U.S. companies.

Boston Mayor Thomas Menino, state Senate President Robert E. Travaglini, D-Boston, and House Speaker Salvatore F. DiMasi, D-Boston, praised Gorbachev as the man who tore down the Berlin Wall, opened up Eastern Europe and ended the threat of nuclear war.

Travaglini and DiMasi noted that Gorbachev’s presence at the Software Council paid special tribute to the state’s cutting edge tech companies as some of the best in the world.

Your appearance today lends to that stature, Travaglini said.

The information technology industry in Russia today is developing very dramatically, said Gorbachev, the 1990 Nobel Peace Prize recipient.

Gorbachev came to the spring membership meeting by way of work the Massachusetts Software Council has done with the U.S.-Russia Chamber of Commerce of New England and RUSSOFT, the Russian national software trade association.

The morning’s event also featured spotlights of Russian companies that were sponsoring the event.

Alexis Sukharev, the president of the IT consulting firm and software developer Auriga of Amherst, N.H., one of the founders of RUSSOFT, spoke of new opportunities for software development in the former Soviet Union that has changed dramatically from the days of the cold war.

Today, me and my colleagues here represent new Russia, - he said.

Gorbachev’s speech touched on his legacy as the Soviet leader, but he also spoke about growing Russian IT exports, which totaled $750 million last year. He said that Russia was following the path of its main competitor for IT outsourcing dollars, India. New industrial parks are springing up in Russian cities to support the need for IT infrastructure, Gorbachev said.

Gorbachev served as the president of the Presidium of the Supreme Soviet of the USSR from 1985 to 1990.


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