US Computer Services Group EDS has topped the list of British software and computer services companies, at the expense of Fujitsu/ICL and IBM which lost market share.
According to a report by analyst Richard Holway, published last week, the figures showed that EDS had surged ahead with contracts totalling #765 million, a 46 per cent increase.
IBM came second with #600 million, while Fujitsu/ ICL had dropped to third place with UK contracts worth #578 million in 1996.
Norman Lockley, marketing manager at ICL Marketing Services, disputed the surge by EDS. He said: ?The only reason why EDS has knocked us off the top is due to the ?mega? contract with the Inland Revenue, worth over #1 billion.?
Holway highlighted the fact that smaller companies were growing in importance in gaining contracts because there was more margin to be earned.
A representative at EDS said: ?We don?t feel that we are at a disadvantage, we just feel that as these smaller organisations will not need the wide range of the skills that we can provide, their problems are generally less complex.?
Lockley agreed: ?Smaller contracts tend to be won by smaller organisations as they can specialise.? But he did not feel that the trend will affect its business.
The Holway report showed that the worse performing sectors during 1996 were hardware maintenance, showing a drop of 6.3 per cent, and the system/operating software with a 3.4 per cent drop.
Microsoft dropped from seventh to ninth position in service revenue, with UK profits up 16 per cent to #260 million. The software giant blames software piracy.
The UK market for the software and services market as a whole grew to #10.9 million in 1996, an increase of 17 per cent, according to Holway.
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