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Frost & Sullivan: Environment Policies and Virtualisation of Workplace Drive the Uptake of Web Conferencing Services in Europe

LONDON, Dec. 1 /PRNewswire/ -- As companies look for ways to reduce their travel expenses while maintaining their productivity levels, web conferencing is becoming an engrossing topic in the European market. Hosted services are the dominant model in delivering web conferencing services to customers, as significant reduction in companies' capital expenditure (CAPEX) has spurred growth across the enterprise communication sector. Hosted services have gained popularity, as they do not require expensive in-house maintenance and upgrades.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, European Hosted Web Conferencing Services Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $162.6 million in 2008 and estimates this to reach $657.1 million in 2014, at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 26.2 per cent.

"The global recession and stringent environmental laws introduced by the European Parliament in 2008 are driving organisations to reduce their travel expenses and comply with 'green' policies", says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Iwona Petruczynik. "Web conferencing services certainly help in achieving these objectives."

The hosted web conferencing services segment grew at 14.9 per cent from 2007 to 2008, mainly due to growing awareness about web conferencing and greater penetration among vertical, small, and medium businesses (SMBs). More mature markets such as Germany, France and the United Kingdom are likely to continue exhibiting an overall high demand for web conferencing having high awareness of this tool, a well-developed infrastructure and boast the presence of several global companies. Markets like Italy, Spain, or Ireland, where conferencing services have been present for some time now, and emerging markets such as Poland and Hungary, where these services are only gaining in popularity will see an expansion as they continue to adopt and implement web-based technologies.

In the past, web conferencing was perceived as difficult to use, with many SMBs regarding it as out of their reach. This outlook has significantly influenced the growth rate of these services in the SMB sector. However, with new, integrated solutions presently entering the market, this situation is changing; web conferencing is becoming more affordable.

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