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Microsoft eyes double-digit Asia rev growth

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HONG KONG, Feb 24 (Reuters) Microsoft Corp., the world's biggest software firm, aims to boost its revenue in Asia by a double-digit percentage rate over each of the next three years, a senior regional executive told Reuters.

Information technology spending in Asia was forecast to grow an average 9 per cent over each of the next three years, but Microsoft could beat the market, said Oliver Roll, general manager of marketing in Asia Pacific.

Microsoft plans to invest billions of dollars in Asia: a region that executives say yields 5 per cent of overall profit and which the U.S. giant expects to lead the world in software growth.

''India and China are in absolute terms the biggest.

However, we invest in relative terms hugely in all the markets,'' he said in an interview late on Thursday.

In Asia, ''our revenue growth will be higher than the IT spending growth. That means our revenue growth will be double-digit or more,'' Roll said.

Microsoft does not give a regional revenue breakdown.

Unlike people who expected a slowdown in big companies adopting technology, Roll said he saw strong growth in software use among large corporations as well as small- and medium-sized businesses in Asia.

Small- and medium-sized businesses were adopting technology for the first time, while big firms tended to use technology more deeply in order to collaborate more effectively, he said.

''I still see huge growth in enterprise computing,'' Roll argued. ''In the next 10 years, we will get more innovation for enterprise computing than we have in the last 25 years.'' REUTERS SD SP1338

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