The Greater Noida Industrial Development Authority (GNIDA) on Wednesday inked a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with the coach of national badminton team and Dronacharya award winner Pullela Gopichand. With the signing of the agreement, a world-class badminton academy will come up at Shaheed Vijay Singh Pathik Sports Complex in Greater Noida, which had been built at a cost of Rs 130 crore.According to GNIDA officials, this will be the first such academy by Gopichand in north India. He already has academies at Gwalior, Vadodara and Hyderabad. The academy is likely to become operational by early October.”The academy will be spread over 30,000 square feet and will have eight badminton courts,” said Deepak Agarwal, chief executive officer, GNIDA. “It will focus on training young talent and ensure their exposure to international coaches and players. It will also provide full support to young sports enthusiasts by providing them education and world-class facilities,” he said.Speaking on the occasion, Gopichand said that his academy will be a centre of excellence. “It has always been my dream to see Indian badminton peak. This academy will be modelled on the excellence centre we have built in Hyderabad,” he said.The academy will have nearly 25 students in the age group 8-15 years to begin with. Preference will be given to students from UP, who will be sponsored by the academy.The academy will also have a commercial wing which will train students from all walks of life including corporates for an annual fee and an excellence centre which will focus on nurturing future champions.