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October 5, 2009

Slow growth ahead: Microsoft

But UK IT job market looking buoyant says Ballmer

By Steve Evans

Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer has predicted a long, slow recovery period as economies around the world look to bounce back from the recession.

According to a report on the BBC, Ballmer believes that there will be a period of slow growth for many years. Talking to the BBC’s business editor Robert Peston, he said: “Right now, I feel like we’re not likely to see a recovery,” but added that, “I’m feeling more optimistic that we won’t feel a second dip.”

Microsoft has struggled during the recession, posting a drop in revenue for the first time in its history. In April Redmond revealed a 6% fall in sales and a 32% drop in net income. In August this year, the firm released more disappointing results. For the quarter ended June 30, 2009, Microsoft recorded revenue of $13.1bn (£7.94bn), down 17% on the year-ago quarter. Profits dropped from $4.3bn (£2.6bn) a year ago to $3.05bn (£1.85bn), a fall of 29%.

The firm blamed the economic situation for a slump in new PC shipments.

Speaking during a visit to London, Ballmer said that he expected to see a rise in the number of IT jobs in the UK. According to The Times, Ballmer forecast that 2,500 new companies in the IT sector will be created by 2013. This should result in 78,000 new jobs throughout the UK IT industry.

Ballmer also dismissed Google’s prospects of overhauling Microsoft in the enterprise software space. Google has recently launched a new web browser, called Chrome, and an operating system of the same name. We’ve had plenty of competitors come after us for years, there’s nothing magic about Google, he said on the BBC.


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