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May 30, 2012

Microsoft News - Microsoft is Looking for Growth Opportunities in Iraq, Asia

By Ed Silverstein, TMCnet Contributor

Microsoft (News - Alert) Corp has named Legend Lands Co. as its first local distributor in Iraq in what is seen as a significant sales effort in the Middle Eastern nation.

"This is a big step for Microsoft and for Iraq," Rajai S. El-Khadem, Microsoft's manager of Business Development for Emerging Markets, told The Associated Press. "As of today Microsoft will be officially and locally represented in Iraq ... to provide Microsoft licenses, support and services for our clients and resellers."

El-Khadem described the market in that nation promising and aggressive. That is in sharp contrast to how the nation was engrossed in wars several years ago.

In addition, Ahmed Izzedien, the CEO of Legend Lands Co., said the company offers software for government offices, public agencies, businesses and residents, according to The AP. Legend Lands will also work with resellers in Iraq, The AP adds.

"Things have changed in Iraq in a way that needs to address the major needs such as updating software used by the government ... and to move in parallel with economic development, mainly in the oil sector," he said in a statement carried by TMCnet.

There are some challenges in the nation. Looking ahead, El-Khadem said the Iraqis need new laws to protect intellectual property rights and software, The AP reported. There are shortages in technology now in Iraq, and prior limited supervision has led to illegal software products appearing in the nation, news reports said.

Iraq has some 31 million residents, according to online data.

In related global company news, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer (News - Alert) recently met with customers, developers, employees, partners and students during an Asian business trip, according to a company press release. Among his stops were China, India, Japan and South Korea.

Edited by Amanda Ciccatelli

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