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July 28, 2010

Casio survey highlights wasted meeting room millions

We're not just calculators and digital watches, says firm

By Steve Evans

UK businesses are losing over £100m every year supporting and maintaining meeting room equipment, according to a new survey from Casio.

Casio carried out the survey as it starts a big push into the business arena and head of B2B marketing, Nieve Cavanagh, told CBR that the firm wanted to raise awareness of the uncontrolled costs of running meeting rooms.

Less than half (43%) of UK firms keep track of the impact of meeting room support and maintenance costs, and this costs the average business £12,500 a year. Covering all large companies in the UK, Casio estimates that around £103m is being lost each year.

IT departments deal on average with 34 presentation equipment incidents each month, with each one taking around 23 minutes. Over a whole year this totals nearly 23 days of an IT manager’s time.

"It’s the sort of cost that flies under the radar and isn’t visible to a company," Cavanagh said. "There’s an accepted way of doing things around maintenance – if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. We’re trying to get companies to think twice about business costs. If they are a drain on a business they need to be looked at."

Casio is pushing into the B2B market as it looks to shake off its reputation of a maker of digital watches and calculators that enjoyed its heyday during the 1980s. It has invested heavily in R&D and delivered products that are greener and more efficient than what is already available on the market, according to Cavanagh.

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The firm has set up a specific B2B arm to work separately from its consumer division. So how important is getting away from Casio’s watches and calculator past to success in the business arena? "It can work both ways," Cavanagh said. "Everyone has heard of Casio and we can piggyback on that. We do have a retro image but we’re updating that and bringing the products into the 21st Century."

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