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• Trustmarque Solutions event focuses on ‘efficiency through technology’ with inspiring keynote speeches from former Trade Minister and champion for British business, Lord Digby Jones, and futurologist Richard Watson

York, UK 31st May 2011: Value Added Reseller, Trustmarque Solutions, hosted its second annual customer and technology event at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London last week. The event was well attended by 180 IT Managers/Directors and technology decision-makers from some of the UK’s most prominent public and private sector organisations who gathered together for a series of thought-provoking seminars, speeches and product demonstrations.

Sarah McNicol, Channel Director UK & Ireland, from vendor partner, Swivel, was very impressed with the conference: “We do a lot of these events and this was one of the best we’ve attended in a long time. The quality of the customers and leads was excellent. We found the interaction with the delegates extremely positive and the people that attended genuinely wanted to engage with the vendors. The event presentations taking place in the exhibitor area also worked to drive more traffic to the stand. It was extremely well run and well attended.”

The challenges of globalisation

Lord Digby Jones opened the show with a searing keynote speech focusing on the need for Britain to innovate its way out of the recession to keep up with the threat from globalisation. Lord Jones captivated the audience providing a fascinating walk through the halls of Westminster over his time as Trade Minister, giving an insider’s view of how the government needs to align itself more closely with business to ensure Britain stays ahead. In particular Lord Jones highlighted the current threat posed by globalisation, giving insight into the challenges faced by Britain today from the rising powerhouses in Asia, stating that “how we rise and adapt to this challenge will set success or failure for our nation.”

Lord Jones suggested that “Europe is too focused on whether nations have a hidden advantage, instead of competing with the best” and that this was making Britain lose sight of the need to be best in class. Lord Jones claimed that setting laws in place to restrict business and trade and trying to force countries into working in a set way is holding British business back. This is the time for higher investment, in technology in particular, as Britain seeks to maintain its competitive edge.

Getting back in shape

Lord Jones insisted that we need to “get public finances back into shape, so that the economy is stable enough to encourage people to invest”. He said that we “can’t rely on protectionism or borrowing”. However at the same time he was very clear that this did not mean making lots of people redundant. Instead if staff are to lose their jobs, then it was vital that these people were offered the chance to retrain so that we could get them back working in the economy. Lord Jones declared it was a “national disgrace” that “forty eight per cent of people are coming out of secondary school without GCSEs in maths and English and that twenty per cent of adults are functionally illiterate.” Lord Jones was passionate about the need for Britain to skill-up and provide a better delivery mechanism for training stating that there is a need for immediate capital investment and that “we can’t do any of this without technology”.

Following his speech a handful of select customers were also treated to a closed door Q&A session with Lord Jones to discuss these pertinent issues in more depth. Trustmarque customer John Mercer took part in the Q&A session and said the event was “well organised and thought provoking, providing the opportunity to discuss a wide range of topics.” While Bernard Bailey, Head of Business Projects for Herbert Smith concluded that “events like this are where innovation begins.”

Trend spotting with Richard Watson

The second keynote speech of the day was from futurologist Richard Watson. Richard is a writer, speaker and strategist who explores current and long term trends and determines how these might develop over the coming years. Richard therefore focused his speech on what he sees to be the greatest challenges facing Britain over the coming years, outlining five key trends:

1. Demographic change
2. The power shift to the East
3. Global connectivity
4. Sustainability
5. GRIN technology

Richard highlighted that we have an ageing population, and the fact that “half of the people that have ever lived to the age of 65 are alive right now”. There has been a much publicised decline in births and this is a global trend that is set to continue. He also suggested that countries like Britain will be looking to counteract this by putting in measures such as the abolition of the retirement age.

The rise of the East was a key feature of Richard’s talk, as it was with Lord Digby Jones, and Richard predicted a rise in research and development which will have an impact on the technology sector. However, Richard also pointed to a regionalisation of business and a focus on home markets as people look to buck the trend to the East and predicted trouble for China as it starts to move from being an exporter to focusing on its internal markets.

From a technology perspective, Richard claims that “mobile phones are the most significant invention since the automobile” and “three quarters of the world currently owns a phone”. He also said that reports have predicted that smartphones will outsell PCs next year.

An event to remember

Aside from the more business focused streams TE2011 also allowed Trustmarque’s client base access to a day of speaker addresses and workshop streams alongside the opportunity to meet a number of important partners. These included vendor sessions from VMware, Citrix, Adobe, Novell and McAfee.

Over thirty software vendors and distributors supported the event, including Citrix, DELL, Hitachi, Novell, LANDesk, Red Hat, McAfee, Sophos, Trend Micro, and Check Point. Andrew Cook, Partner Development Manager for Hitachi Data Systems enthused: “TE2011 is a different day from your usual run of the mill events. I thought the stamp idea for winning an iPad was brilliant and a great way to draw people to the stands and get them talking.”

TE2011 also saw the introduction of a new ‘Cloud Zone’, which provided Trustmarque with the opportunity to showcase its new Cloud offerings following the acquisition of Nimbus Technology Systems Ltd earlier this month, as well as its range of specialist service areas which formulate Trustmarque’s Enterprise Solutions Group (TESG). Scott Haddow, CEO for Trustmarque, was delighted with the turnout:

“We are really pleased with how the event has gone and the level of attendance. Our partners in the exhibition areas were very happy with the calibre of the leads generated from the show and the quality of the conversations they have had with customers. We are always keen to add value for our partners and deliver trusted advice to our customers, and this event is the perfect opportunity to combine both roles. The keynote speeches in particular have gone down a storm. Now we just have to start working on how we can make next year even bigger and better!”

-Ends-

About Trustmarque Solutions
Trustmarque has been providing value added services to customers since it was founded in 1987 and is now one of the UK’s largest Value Added Resellers. Trustmarque brings together years of knowledge plus a strong track record of delivering successful IT enabled projects for customers that realise positive business outcomes. Trustmarque delivers solutions across six key areas: Business Performance Management, Information Security, Core Infrastructure Services, Microsoft Integrated Solutions, Managed Licence Services and Software Procurement Consultancy.

Trustmarque is also a Microsoft Large Account Reseller (LAR) with Microsoft Gold Certified Partner status, as well as partnering with many other major vendors in the IT market, such as: Adobe, Business Objects, CA, Citrix, McAfee, Novell, Nuance, Sophos, Symantec, Trend, VMware and Websense to name but a few.

Trustmarque Solutions has worked with The CarbonNeutral Company (formerly Future Forests) leaders in the field of carbon management and climate change solutions to become a CarbonNeutral® company.

For more information about Trustmarque visit www.trustmarque.com, call 0845 2101 500 or email info@trustmarque.com.

For further information:
Cathy O’Neill
C8 Consulting Ltd for Trustmarque
+44 (0) 118 9001135
cathy@c8consulting.co.uk

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