CA sets up sales team to boost services business

Computer Associates International has assembled a group of sales people whose task will be to promote the company's IT services...

Computer Associates International has assembled a group of sales people whose task will be to promote the company's IT services offerings.

CA said it began training the 80-person unit, dubbed the Service Development Specialists (SDS) group, in April. It plans to launch the outfit officially this autumn.

Officials at CA said they hoped the sales team would reverse a decline in the company's IT services revenue.

The services business has been dipping for several quarters. Last week, CA reported that services revenue dropped to $65m (£42m) in its first quarter which ended 30 June, down from $83m in the same period a year ago.

Sanjay Kumar, CA's president and chief executive officer, said that the company needs a boost in the IT services market. "We just absolutely have to do better in that business," he said. "We'll make some changes there."

Until now, the company has not had a sales force devoted to services. Bob Dinkel, CA's senior vice-president for services in North America, said the SDS personnel are being trained to drum up services-related business, although he added that they will work with CA's software sales force on deals.

Kumar said he remains convinced that focusing on service offerings tied to CA's technology "is the best use of our resources".

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