Microsoft has launched its promised research, designed to encourage resellers to petition the US government on its behalf over its current antitrust battles.
At its Fusion 98 reseller conference in New Orleans over the weekend, the software giant detailed the study, undertaken by Nathan & Associates, in an attempt to demonstrate the importance of its technology to the US economy.
According to the document, some 230,000 US organisations can be considered 'hi-tech entrepreneurs' or Vars, systems integrators and resellers, jointly employing some 2.2 million staff directly, while the Unix industry only has 600,000 such employees.
This channel is said to contribute $134 billion to the economy, or 1.7 per cent of gross national product, and pay $55 billion in taxes, some ?99 per cent of which are spent probably trying to regulate us?, said Steve Ballmer, Microsoft?s executive vice president of sales and support.
He continued: ?You can use these for whatever activities are hot on your radar screen. We will be doing more public relations, more marketing to play up the concept of why this industry is a good place for youngsters to go to work.?
The company has also dubbed fiscal 1999 as its year of the medium-sized company. It estimates there are 135,000 such midsized organisations or 'Morgs' in the US, with some 5,000 at the high end of the sector. Most have between 50 and 499 PCs installed, although the average number is 83, and have an average of three IT staff.
Doug Martin, Microsoft?s group marketing manager for the middle market, explained: ?Microsoft has been focussing on the above 1,000 PC customer. Now, we will be dedicating our resources on developing the 500-1,000 PC space.?
But, to do so, he admitted that the firm would first need to combat high rates of software piracy, which it believes lead to it getting only half the potential revenues it could.
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