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Tech Industry

Microsoft, EDS forge services alliance

Microsoft and consulting giant EDS partner to offer Windows NT and BackOffice services to business customers.

Microsoft and consulting giant EDS have partnered to offer Windows NT and BackOffice services to business customers.

The two firms said they will team to sell services and software to financial and other firms.

Plano, Texas-based EDS is the world's second-largest provider of computer services and management. It develops and runs large computer and telecommunications systems for major government and corporate clients and frequently has partnered with Redmond, Washington-based Microsoft, the world's largest software company.

Last year EDS announced a new service to install and run large corporate networks based on the software giant's high-end Windows NT system.

This latest deal includes a commitment from EDS to expand its Microsoft-related services offerings, and to train as many as 7,000 consultants as either Microsoft Certified Systems Engineers or Microsoft Certified Solution Developers. EDS says the commitment to Microsoft training is the largest to date by any company worldwide.

In turn, Microsoft will provide EDS with early access to new Microsoft software so that EDS can get a jump on its competitors in building Microsoft-specific applications.

EDS has embarked on an aggressive effort to land big new contracts this year under the leadership of chairman and chief executive Dick Brown, who was hired late last year with a mandate to revive flagging profit growth.

Last week EDS announced two 10-year contracts worth a total $1 billion--a deal to provide all information technology for Telecom New Zealand and another to run the data center at credit card, check and electronic payment processor Equifax Payment Services, a Florida-based subsidiary of Equifax.

Microsoft was part of the Telecom New Zealand announcement, winning a contract to work with EDS and provide online solutions for the telecommunications company.

Reuters contributed to this story.