Acer to invest US$1B to develop Internet services

In a move to develop its IT services business, Acer Inc. plans to invest US$1 billion over the next three years to develop infrastructure, including hardware and software, for Internet-based services, the company said Tuesday.

Acer also plans to partner with international telecommunication companies, software vendors and technology companies to develop Internet-related services for companies in Greater China, the company said in a statement. The statement did not specify which companies Acer plans to work with.

By 2004, Acer expects 40 percent of its revenue to come from Internet-based services, including the sale of related IT hardware. That would be a major shift for the company, which derives nearly all its revenue from the sale of IT hardware.

The announcement that Acer is planning to invest in developing infrastructure for Internet-related services comes as the company prepares to officially launch a new business unit that will develop an array of Internet-based software applications. The new business unit is expected to be announced on Thursday, according to Erica Hao, a company spokeswoman.

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