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Computacenter posts higher full-year revenue, shares rise

By Aashika Jain

(Reuters) - British IT services provider Computacenter Plc reported a rise in full-year group revenue that exceeded analysts' estimates, boosted by a strong demand for its maintenance services in the UK.

Shares in Computacenter, which sells PCs apart from providing services including software upgrades, rose as much as 4.6 percent on Thursday, making the stock one of the top gainers on the FTSE-250 index.

Revenue grew 6 percent in 2013, said Computacenter, whose clients include Lloyds Banking Group, Serco Group, British Telecom, Deutsche Bank, WM Morrison and EDF.

That implies revenue of 3.09 billion pounds ($5.05 billion) for the year ended December 31.

The company also said revenue grew 3 percent excluding the effect of currency movements, implying revenue of about 3 billion pounds.

Analysts on average expected Computacenter to report full-year revenue of 2.99 billion pounds according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Contracts won in the UK in the fourth quarter would boost growth, the company — UK's largest provider of Microsoft Windows XP upgrades — said on Thursday.

Computacenter would benefit from corporate budget splurges on upgrades once Microsoft stops further XP upgrades, Panmure Gordon & Co analyst George O'Connor told Reuters.

Microsoft said Wednesday that it would cease to support XP as an operating system from April 8. (http://link.reuters.com/haz95v)

Computacenter reported full-year revenue from UK increased 8 percent and grew 7 percent in Germany. The countries contribute more than 40 percent of the company's revenue each.

UK services revenue grew 6 percent.

Shares in the Hertfordshire-based company were up 2 percent at 658.8 pence at 1314 GMT.

(Reporting by Aashika Jain in Bangalore; Editing by Supriya Kurane and Joyjeet Das)