Microsoft, Tata to establish joint venture in China

This move is the latest in Microsoft's bid to expand its presence in the Chinese market.

Microsoft is teaming up with Indian IT services provider Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), and three other Chinese companies to establish an IT outsourcing company in China.

TCS will be the majority shareholder of the joint venture, which is expected to begin operations in June 2006 in Beijing, China, while Microsoft and the Chinese partners will hold minority shares. No financial details were available.

According to a Microsoft media statement, the new company will be providing outsourcing services to all major markets worldwide, particularly the United States, Europe, and the Asia-Pacific region, including the Chinese market.

The three Chinese partners involved in the venture are: Beijing Zhongguancun Software Park Development, Uniware and Tianjin Huayuan Software Area Construction and Development.

Microsoft’s investment reflects yet another step the software giant is taking to increase its presence in the country. The company first set up a representative office in 1992, and later opened a computer research lab in 1998. Since then, it has been working with local companies in China to provide software development services.