Technology giant IBM has opened two new branch offices in the Chinese cities of Yantai and Yinchuan, bringing its total number of locations in the country to 50.
The new offices are part of IBM’s ongoing investment in the world’s second-largest economy, encompassing the creation of new offices, facilities, training and recruitment, sales and marketing and corporate citizenship.
"China is a key market for IBM and we have a major programme of geographic expansion in place to ensure that we tap into the country’s best growth opportunities – wherever they are," said Qian Daqun, chairman and CEO of IBM Greater China Group.
"As the IT market in China’s regional cities matures, we are experiencing greater demand for advanced solutions and services, meaning that a local physical presence is essential for our business."
Agriculture has traditionally dominated the economies of Yantai and Yinchuan, in the north and west of China. However, the emerging services and manufacturing sectors are driving new IT growth, as businesses turn to technology to improve operations and remain competitive.
"Technology is increasingly important in cities like Yinchuan, acting as a key enabler of economic growth and helping to transform city systems," said Wei Kaixiang, deputy secretary of the People’s Government of Yinchuan Municipality.
According to research firm IDC, the IT services market in China is expected to increase from US$12.2bn in 2010 to US$23.7bn in 2015.
IBM first began operations in China in 1979, when it shipped an IBM 370/138 mainframe to Shenyang Air Blower Factory.