TMT Blog: Don’t write Microsoft off

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I really thought, a year or two back, that Microsoft would not necessarily be on the swift descent that say RIM has been on – but it nevertheless would be on a slow decline as its seemingly fleet of foot rivals stole a march. I’m beginning to change this view. We meet loads of businesses that have a solid installed, on-premise base that can’t make the leap into SaaS because they are listed / have gearing / have PE that wants to exit in a year or two and, frankly, they cannot afford the hit on revenue and earnings for two or three years. Perversely, the big declines in MS Office licence revenues in their latest MS results is really encouraging as they are being bold about the push to MS 365. It will be interesting to see if other tech giants in different enterprise technologies are as bold – Autodesk being one such player that we are watching with interest as they seem to be on a similar path. MS also seem to be fighting back on hardware – I’ve met a few die-hard Apple fans latterly that are gushing about the capabilities of the Surface. I still think it will be a while before MS can regain much ground as a perceived innovator, but they are doing lots of things right for the long game.