Storage management specialist Veritas Software plans to spur Asia-Pacific sales with an aggressive expansion drive across Greater China. Newly appointed president for Greater China operations Pong Pak-wah said the focus would be to establish a development centre on the mainland, to increase local partnerships, initiate education programmes and to offer a broader services portfolio. 'So far we have not done a good job in penetrating this market, but we expect these moves will help the company generate five times the amount of business it has in the mainland, Hong Kong and Taiwan over the past four years,' he said. Veritas was looking at a 'multimillion-dollar investment' to upgrade its sales, marketing and services infrastructure on par with what rivals such as EMC and IBM were doing. That would include a 15 per cent increase in staff requirements this year from the present 200. The Greater China headquarters for Silicon Valley-based Veritas is Hong Kong. Mr Pong said services-related revenues in Greater China made up only 10 per cent of total revenues. Worldwide, this ratio was 25 per cent for services which included maintenance, tech support, consulting, and training. Veritas is the world's leading storage software firm and the world's No 8 software firm, with US$1.5 billion in revenue last year. It provides data protection, storage management, high-availability and disaster-recovery software to 86 per cent of the Fortune 500 firms. But Mr Pong noted that only 5 per cent of the company's revenues came from Asia-Pacific sales. The ability to tap opportunities in Greater China, which makes up 40 per cent of Asian revenues, could help lift international revenues. Estimates from research firm Gartner indicated the amount of data from the mainland alone could increase to 200,000 terabytes in 2005 from 16,500TB this year. Hong Kong's storage demand is expected to reach 18,000TB by 2005 from 2,000TB this year, while Taiwan's forecast is 33,000TB from 3,000TB. 'We expect storage capacity requirements from the Greater China market to increase 12 to 13 times over the next few years, which means more opportunities to manage, back-up and pool those resources to networks,' Mr Pong said. International Data Corp analyst Grace Lai said the Hong Kong storage software market was dominated by EMC, which has a 35 per cent lead over Veritas. 'Collectively, these two vendors have won more than half the storage software spending in this market,' she said. Mr Pong said Veritas could compete more effectively in Greater China against the software programmes of EMC, IBM, Hitachi Data Systems and Sun Microsystems 'because, unlike these competitors, we have no hardware agenda'.