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Tech Ed Success Signals IT Sector Opportunity

News Release

Microsoft Tech Ed Success Signals IT Sector Opportunity

Over-subscribed technology event demonstrates vibrancy of the New Zealand IT sector

AUCKLAND, New Zealand - 25 August 2005 - Unprecedented demand for places at New Zealand's premiere technology training event signals a turning point in the evolution of the domestic technology sector, says Microsoft New Zealand's Managing Director, Ross Peat.

"We are on the cusp of a period of significant change. Technology convergence has led to much greater acceptance of the productivity benefits that can be achieved. At the same time, the core technologies are providing scalability, connectivity and a level of simplicity that makes high-end services no longer solely the preserve of large enterprises. These advances have grown the market opportunity for New Zealand's IT community.

"The unprecedented interest in this year's event reflects the excitement surrounding these opportunities as well as an increase in the value organisations place on their technology investment. Microsoft has played its part through the development of a range of technology solutions that drive innovation and ultimately growth in employee productivity."

"As a result, attendance at Tech Ed has become an essential part of professional and industry development," says Peat.

Held in Auckland on 28-31 August, at the Sky City Convention Centre, Microsoft Tech Ed is New Zealand's largest training event, attended by 2,000 technology professionals. A further 700 tertiary students will attend Tech Ed Student day on Friday 26 August that, says Peat, is aimed at inspiring and encouraging the next wave of New Zealand's IT talent as well as providing a networking opportunity for prospective employers.

Microsoft New Zealand's Director Developer & Platform Strategy Group, Sean McBreen, says this year's Tech Ed programme, which includes 128 separate sessions hosted by 70 local and international speakers, is designed to meet the needs of the IT community, who have contributed to its format.

The event programme includes previews of a number of new Microsoft technologies that will whet the appetite of the New Zealand technology community, says McBreen.

"The technology community has been, and will continue to be, the engine of much of the innovation and business-led change that occurs inside New Zealand organisations.

"Technology is now well and truly situated at the core of business and organisational life. IT professionals have progressively moved up the management chain as awareness of technology's value to their organisations has increased, becoming business decision makers and strategists as well as technology experts," says McBreen.

"As such, Tech Ed has increasingly become a discussion about productivity and value, as much as it's about Microsoft's technology itself."

"Overall, the goal of Tech Ed is to challenge and feed that commitment to innovation and process improvement through the continued enhancement of our software platform in partnership with the community it serves," says McBreen.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realise their full potential.

ENDS

Microsoft is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries. The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

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