Hong Kong teen lands US$7,500 scholarship after winning Microsoft Office world championship

PUBLISHED : Monday, 17 August, 2015, 1:28pm
UPDATED : Wednesday, 19 August, 2015, 2:00pm

A Hong Kong teenager beat 144 fellow students to gain first place in the Microsoft Office Specialist World Championship for his expertise in Microsoft Word.

Lee Pak Hei, 17, was named world champion in Microsoft Word 2013 (the most recent version of the software) at a ceremony in Dallas, Texas, winning scholarship money worth US$7,500 in the competition held by testing firm Certiport.

“These winners are part of an elite group that know how to use Microsoft Word efficiently and to its full potential,” said Certiport's Aaron Osmond.

The competition saw 600,000 people from 47 countries aged between 13 and 22 compete to show their skills across Microsoft Office products.

More than 1.2 billion people worldwide use the suite of Microsoft Office products, which includes Word, spreadsheet software Excel and presentation tool PowerPoint.

In the final round, contestants worked on project-based tests to show their ability to create documents in Word.

Second place in the competition founded in 2002 went to Yuting Cao from China, followed by Yoko Shimoji from Japan in third place.

“Winning the world championship puts them in a class of their own, and we look forward to seeing how they put their Microsoft Office skills to use in the future," said Alison Cunard, general manager of learning experiences at Microsoft.

Last month, Microsoft launched Windows 10 in Hong Kong, the latest version of its popular operating system. Windows 10 was offered as a free upgrade for customers worldwide running Windows 7 or 8.

The move came as the US technology giant's hardware strategy was being questioned by analysts as strong sales of the Xbox One and Surface tablet family failed to generate significant profits and may even be costing the firm money.

Correction: A previous version of this article mistakenly stated that the Microsoft Word competition was in Las Vegas.