Singapore: SAS Institute Inc., the world’s biggest closely held software company, said Asia will account for as much as a quarter of its business by 2017, driven by growing demand in China and India.
Asia accounts for about 10% of its total revenue and that’s set to climb to as much as 25% in the next 10 years, said chief executive officer James Goodnight.
Demand will be driven by growth in financial services and increased spending by the region’s governments, he said.
“It’s guaranteed,” Goodnight said. “There’s a vibrant, strong-growing economy here that needs to have the analytical capability that our software brings to the table.”
Expansion will help spur demand for the products of the SAS Institute, whose software helps clients including Citigroup Inc., the world’s biggest banking group, decide to accept credit card charges and assists companies predict sales patterns.
The International Monetary Fund in April forecast that the region’s economies may grow 7.2% this year, faster than an earlier estimate of 7.1%.
Sales in India almost doubled each year for the last three to four years, Goodnight said. Singapore and the Philippines are also countries that will drive SAS Institute’s revenue growth, he said
The company currently has cash of about $1 billion (Rs4,100 crore) and no debt on its balance sheet, Goodnight said. It doesn’t have any plan to make acquisitions and will instead continue to invest in research, he said.
Oracle Corp., which competes with SAS Institute for so- called data warehousing software sales, has bought 31 companies since January 2005.
Oracle’s chief executive officer Larry Ellison said this month it plans to continue an acquisition spree to grow its revenue to as much as $50 billion in five years.
“We’ve got a number of internal products in development rather than just buy a bunch of new products,” Goodnight said. “This year, we’ll probably spend about half a billion dollars on research.”
Anand Menon in Singapore contributed to this story.