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Tech-Support Company

Turn people's baffling computer mishaps into a money-making opportunity.

This story appears in the April 2001 issue of Entrepreneurs Start-Ups magazine.

My computer growls at me. Grrrr. Sometimes, I imagine a little elf inside grumbling at me for waking him up to run the hard drive. I wait for the elf to calm down, or I hit the tower, rattling the little guy enough to shut him up. When nothing appeases him, I'll finally call one of our computer techs to permanently solve the problem. That makes me one of the lucky ones.

Average consumers or business owners generally don't have a convenient techie to aid them in times of need. That's where a growing number of help-desk companies hope to capture a chunk of the tech-support market. While there were nearly 72 million PCs installed in American homes and $150 million generated by support portals in 1999, IDC predicts those numbers will grow to more than 128 million PCs and over $4 billion in 2004.

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