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19/04/2021

A Derby-based IT company is suing Microsoft for £270 million. ValueLicensing, a firm that sells second-hand versions of software, has accused Microsoft of "abusing its power" and causing it to lose out on revenue.

ValueLicensing says the US technology giant has caused it to lose millions of pounds

A Derby-based IT company is suing Microsoft for £270 million.

ValueLicensing, a firm that sells second-hand versions of software, has accused Microsoft of "abusing its power" and causing it to lose out on revenue.

The Derby firm, which is based in St Katherine's House in St Mary's Wharf, buys pre-owned Microsoft software licences when other companies upgrade their IT systems, and resells them in the UK and Europe at a profit.

It claims to have saved one NHS Trust £1 million by allowing it to run Microsoft Office 2019, instead of the latest version of the Microsoft product.

ValueLicensing alleges Microsoft has been imposing anti-competitive contract clauses on organisations using its products - offering them a discount as long as they agree not to resell the perpetual licences.

It says this, along with non-disclosure agreements, has eliminated most preowned licences from the market, leading to higher prices and less choice for customers.

The firm has taken Microsoft to the English High Court, saying that these actions are an attempt to ruin the market for second-hand versions of its software, something which is worth billions of pounds.

It says since Microsoft began imposing these restrictions on its customers in 2016, ValueLicensing has lost out on an estimated gross profit of around £270 million.

Jonathan Horley, the founder of ValueLicensing, said the behaviour of Microsoft has affected companies across the world.

 

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