BLOG: That was the week that was
Peter Lloyd, September 14, 2012
In the first of an occasional series, former AV editor Peter Lloyd looks back at the AV events he’s recently encountered.
ROLLING OUT THE BARRELS
It’s not clear whether AV companies are celebrating their maturity or just awarding themselves a party in relief at their own survival, but my diary for the next couple of weeks features several celebrations.
Last Wednesday Steljes Ltd took a hospitality suite at Kempton Park races to mark its 25th year in business. AMX plans to celebrate 30 years in a fortnight’s time and RGB Communications’ coming of age bash (it’s 21) is inked in for October.
Steljes led this Autumn’s field by sponsoring a race, which was catchily titled “The Steljes 25 Year Celebration Classified Claiming Stakes (Class 5)”. The 50-plus resellers, integrators and vendors who turned up – described by one wit as “the great, the good, and the above-average” – were there to celebrate the distributor’s ability to bring new technologies to market, modify its business approach to suit changing market conditions, and help its customers grow their own businesses.
We all raised a glass to that. The rumour is that AV Editor Clive Couldwell, who picked the winner in the Steljes Stakes, raised several.
DEALING WITH THE C-WORD
Collaboration’s clearly next on the Steljes agenda and plenty of the assembled resellers and integrators at the evening meeting saw it as an important part of their future.
But it’s becoming desperately clear that the whole idea of “collaboration” means different things to different people. To some, it’s an extension of videoconferencing (or even a new name for it). To others, it’s interactive whiteboards for corporates, or touch screen overlays for better-off corporates. And then there are the issues raised by remote collaboration – which aims to include people in meetings even if they are not in the room – and the need to develop collaborative management techniques which work across potentially disparate business cultures.
Over the next few months I plan to try and do some research into that whole area, so watch this space.
Just about the first person I saw at Kempton Park, who I bumped into outside the stand, was denying that his company was about to be taken over even before he shook hands. “And if it’s not us then it’s going to be X,” he added.
Leaving aside any suspicion that “the lady doest protest too much” there’s a suggestion that more industry consolidation is about to take place, with several of the top five AV integrators currently playing musical chairs.
If it’s time to place your bets, I hope you do better than I did at Kempton.