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Videoconferencing Gets Boost From Volcanic Eruption

April 20, 2010

The Iceland volcano disrupting business travel across Europe has caused a boost in the videoconferencing industry, according to Cisco Systems.

Fredrik Halvorsen, former Tandberg CEO and head of Cisco Systems’ TelePresence Technology Group, told Reuters: “We have seen a huge spike in usage.”

The ash cloud is responsible for disrupting air travel in many parts of Europe for the sixth straight day, leaving many businesses without a way for their employees to get to meetings and conferences.

The air travel shutdown has boosted videoconferencing equipment sales and Cisco took in a lot of profit over the ordeal.

Norwegian tech company Videoworks, which opened its doors on Monday, told Reuters it will start supplying conferencing systems based on Sony technology. Chief Executive Even Zimmer said the volcano will make business people think about the benefits of videoconferencing.

“The timing is very good,” said Zimmer. There is a growing market for conferencing equipment and the effects of the ash cloud will not soon be forgotten.

The videoconferencing sector has seen a lot of positive changes and acquisition deals. Analysts say there is a good growth potential for companies looking to cut down on travel expenses.

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