The worldwide market for IT services grew 6.7% to £337.6bn last year, helped by the US dollar’s continued decline against other currencies, according to analyst firm Gartner.
Taking into account the weak dollar, Gartner said that the growth in the IT services market in real terms was only 2.2%.
"Computer Sciences and EDS each have a strong concentration of revenue in the US, which affected global growth for both companies in a year in which the dollar declined," said Kathryn Hale, principal analyst for Gartner's worldwide IT services group.
Gartner said IBM continued to be the leading market player with 7.6% of world sales, but management consultancy Accenture showed the strongest growth among the top six with an increase in sales of 16.4%.
"Outsourcing was the growth driver for IBM and HP in 2004, while Accenture experienced equivalent increases in both the outsourcing and consulting segments," said Hale.
Fujitsu's outsourcing business grew in Europe, but the weak economic recovery in Japan and the impact of the company's restructuring efforts reduced its growth rate to slightly below the industry average, according to Gartner.
EDS was the only company in the top six which saw no sales growth in 2004.