What Next for Microsoft in China?

With China honcho Tim Chen's fast break to the NBA, Microsoft is caught off guard. Chen's successor must keep the momentum going on the mainland

Tim Chen took over as head of Microsoft's (MSFT) Chinese business in 2003 with one of the toughest assignments of any multinational executive in China. The company was suffering from rampant software piracy and had rocky relations with Beijing's leaders, who didn't trust the U.S. giant and were promoting plans to develop a local operating system as an alternative to Windows. Microsoft had plenty of internal problems, too, with the company enduring several embarrassing defections of top China execs, including one who wrote a tell-all book in Chinese that was a big seller.

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