Microsoft keen on R&D, education projects in Turkey

Dunya – Software giant Microsoft is considering projects in Turkey that could potentially turn into high-tech investments in software research and development (R&D), after an invitation from Turkey’s Science, Industry and Technology Minister Nihat Ergun who paid a visit to the company’s headquarters in Seattle, Washington.

“Turkey’s growth potential does not escape from Microsoft’s attention” said Ergun after meeting with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, adding that the company would send a team to Turkey to assess investment opportunities in software development. “According to Ballmer, Microsoft’s VoiP product Skype’s development can take place in Turkey. The company may invest in an R&D center to focus on software development in Turkey like its similar labs in India and Israel” the minister stated.

The cooperation between Microsoft and Turkish universities was another key topic of the meeting. Microsoft has agreed to work on extending the type of cooperation between Koc University and Microsoft to other Turkish universities. The possibility of hardware manufacturing in Turkey for the company’s cloud computing initiative was also brought to the table, Ergun said.

Microsoft is also interested in Turkey’s USD 7.5 billion Fatih Project that involves supplying tablet computers to millions of primary school students as a presentation of different models of tablet computers was given to Minister Ergun in his meeting with the Microsoft CEO.

Turkey aims to procure tablet PCs and other high-tech education equipment locally, through partnership between Turkish and foreign tech companies, in order to equip 15 million students with tablet PCs within the next four years.

Microsoft runs its Middle East and North Africa (MENA) operations, covering 79 countries, from its regional headquarters in Istanbul, Turkey.
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