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London, 11 October 2005. Call Centre Expo has reinforced its position as Europe’s leading contact centre event by increasing the number of Continental European and International overseas visitors for the seventh year running. By forging links with European and International press and trade associations nearly 10% of attendees at the show are now non-UK.

The event’s increasing international focus is further evidenced by the number of overseas exhibitors choosing the event. Event Director, Mark Abay, corroborates this, “This year we have played host to 35 overseas exhibitors not only from outsourcing hotspots such as India and South Africa but also product and service suppliers from both established markets like the U.S. and emerging markets including the Czech Republic and Bulgaria.”

The move towards internationalisation is recognised by Rufus Grigg, Managing Director at Callmedia and exhibitors since the show’s launch in 1999, “We’re now working in a mature industry. The majority of people we speak to have established systems in place and are now taking the time to benchmark and upgrade. In addition to servicing the maturing UK market, it’s great to see that CMP is maintaining and increasing Call Centre Expo's investment in visitor marketing and further extending the show's European and International reach. We look forward to being back next year!”

The European Call Centre Awards, staged alongside the exhibition and conference, was a sell-out for its tenth anniversary and received the highest number of entries in its history. Comedian Jimmy Carr hosted the glittering ceremony which filled the Hilton Metropole’s NEC’s Monarch Suite. The evening also assisted in building relationships with the European contact centre community as the organisers were joined by nine representatives from ECCCO (European Confederation of Contact Centre Organisations) and six editors of European contact centre titles, including Teletalk (Germany), Voicecom News (Italy) and Telecommerce (The Netherlands) and CCF (UK).

Once again the exhibition welcomed 230 exhibitors with 103 choosing the exhibition as the ideal showcase to launch their latest call and contact centre products and services. They were kept busy too, with an attendance of 5,887 (subject to ABC audit) over the two-day event. Visitors to this year’s show were clearly focused on buying with over 40% stating their visit was to purchase, implement or upgrade whilst a further 12% were using the event to produce specifications. Of those visitors a quarter had a call centre budget of over £1m; almost a third worked for a call centre with over 250 agents while 15% represented organisations with in excess of 1,000 agents. Chantal Smith, EMEA Product Marketing Manager at Nortel, sums up the focus of this year’s visitors "CC Expo is still the leading contact centre exhibition in the UK and we were delighted to have met high quality customers and prospects on a decision making level."

Dave Thomson, EMEA Marketing Manager - Contact Centre at Cisco Systems also confirms the event’s caliber, "Once again, Call Centre Expo delivered the goods. Our stand was constantly busy, we got some quality leads and we got our message across. For Cisco the event was a great success and we're looking forward to coming back in 2006."

The VIP scheme, launched in 2004, also helped to ensure the event continued to attract the most senior buyers: 70% of visitors were manager level or above and 613 of visitors benefited from the VIP Club Suite with 30 lucky winners taking away a copy of the Merchant’s Global Contact Centre Benchmarking report. Tony Heard, Marketing Director at Teletech, a US contact centre outsourcer, used Call Centre Expo as a platform to launch into the UK market. As sponsor of the VIP scheme he was impressed by the number and quality of visitors attending the event, when compared to the international shows he has been involved in, “The VIP scheme provided us with an ideal platform to get our name out to purchasers of outsourced contact centre services. The superb leads that we generated have provided us with the best resources to raise awareness of our UK business.”

Education too remained at the forefront of visitors’ attention with the conference attracting a record 432 delegates, an 11% increase on 2004. The Veuve Clicquot Business Woman of the Year, Chey Garland’s session on, ‘The importance of ‘people development’ and ‘customer value’ in building next generation customer contact operations’ was the conference’s most popular session with delegates also focusing on improving customer service and transforming their contact centre’s into multi-channel operations.

The four keynote sessions yet again proved enormously popular drawing over 1,000 attendees over the two days. Cara Diemont’s presentation, with an audience of over 350, took a hard-hitting look at the failings in the UK contact centre industry, aided by findings from Merchant’s Global Contact Centre Benchmarking Report, whilst Judy Smyth offered attendees a greater understanding of how CCA Standards could be related to their businesses. On day two of the event, Robert Dirskovski, Head of Interactive Media at the DMA, chaired a lively session on the impact of TPS and the death of outbound telemarketing and Anne Marie Forsyth, CEO of the CCA, presented to a packed room on how to change the rules of customer service and allow the rhetoric to meet the reality.

- ENDS -



Notes to Editor:

Photography
A selection of photograph from Call Centre Expo 2005 is available. If you require any images to support this release please email cpuddifoot@cmpinformation.com

1) Call Centre Expo had a total attendance of 5887, subject to ABC Audit.

About Call Centre Expo:
Since its launch in 1999, Call Centre Expo has achieved extensive growth in both visitor and exhibitor figures to become Europe’s leading customer contact event. With 95 exhibitors and 3,000 visitors in 1999, the show now attracts more than 200 exhibitors and an attendance of 6,000 annually. Call Centre Expo 2006 will take place on 3 - 4 October at the NEC, Birmingham, UK.

The Customer Management & ATC Portfolio has successfully served the information needs of the UK call & contact centre industry for over 5 years through market leading products: CCF magazine (Call Centre Focus), Call Centre Expo, Call Centre Executive Forum, The Call Centre Datafile, The European Call Centre Awards, the Call Centre Media Portal, Customer: Strategy & Management and Technology For Marketing.

About CMP Information
CMP Information is the UK-headquartered professional media division of United Business Media plc.
Operating in the UK and Europe, CMPi provides creative professional media solutions to around 20 industry sectors. Its products, including magazines, exhibitions, conferences, awards, directories and websites, are targeted at business professionals across a range of markets; these include Building & Property, Medical, Travel, Agriculture and the licensed trade.

Amongst its well-established brands are industry-leading publications including Building, Pulse, Travel Trade Gazette, Farmers Guardian, Music Week and The Publican. CMPi also has a number of leading directories, compendiums and information services such as the Building Product Compendium, ABI, Benns Media and The Knowledge. It also has a number of exhibitions recognised as the pre-eminent events in their respective market sectors. These include CPhI, The Interiors Event, International Fire Expo and IFSEC.

CMPi's magazines reach over 660,000 readers directly through subscription and controlled circulation. CMPi has a significant classified advertising business and all of its 40 magazines carry classified sections, most notably those with a strong presence in their markets, such as Building, Building Design, Farmers Guardian and Printing World. Each year, over 330,000 business professionals and marketers visit its exhibitions. CMPi has approximately 900 employees in the UK and Europe and in 2004 had revenues of £159.3 million.

Press Contact: CMPi: Clare Puddifoot, Tel: +44 (0)20 7921 8526, email:cpuddifoot@cmpinformation.com

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