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March 4, 1999

INDUSTRY ASSOCIATION SAYS SPLIT UP MICROSOFT

By CBR Staff Writer

A report from the Software and Information Industry Association leaked to the press yesterday suggests that Microsoft Corp should be broken into smaller companies focused on specific markets, if it loses the antitrust case bought against it by the US department of Justice. The SIIA, which has over 1,300 members including Microsoft, was the result of the merger at the beginning of this year between the Software Publishers Association and the Information Industry Association. It was commissioned by the SIIA’s 23-board members, and has been forwarded on to the Justice Department. The reports suggests that Microsoft could either be split into units concentrating on operating systems, development tools and applications, or split into three or four smaller versions of itself. Speaking in San Francisco yesterday, Microsoft chairman called the premature leaking of the report very unfortunate and said it was not representative of the views of the organization as a whole. Only 60 of the 1,300 SIAA members were involved in putting the report together, he said. Gates promised a counter to the report from the Washington-based Competitive Enterprise Institute was due for imminent publication.

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