Green Light 2015 Review – An Holistic Business Experience
Designed to create an ‘holistic experience’ for the business products industry, VOW’s Green Light 2015 on 23 January saw hundreds of vendors, resellers and service providers from across the UK join forces to discuss industry issues, products and services and participate in workshops.
A keynote speech from Baroness Karren Brady saw the vice-chairman of West Ham United FC and aide to Sir Alan Sugar on The Apprentice say that if delegates took one thing away from her talk at the Birmingham Hilton Metropole, it should be ‘persistence’, quoting the 30th President of the United States Calvin Coolidge.
Baroness Brady described her former mission to successfully win hearts and minds and encourage innovation as managing director of Birmingham City FC.
She outlined the need to hold on to old ways while they are working but also being ready to take on new ideas when these are right and the belief that leadership only truly shows itself during the hard times.
VOW managing director Adrian Butler gave an overview of 2014, which saw VOW sales grow by 6% and growth in the furniture and facilities supplies categories were cited by Adrian as some of the factors in this, with further development and best in class procurement targeted for the future as a result of Vasanta’s merger with o2o to form the new £660 million EVO Group.
National sales director Martin Weedall described the increase in VOW partners to 197, explaining that there would be a review of the VOW partner programme in 2015 to create a multi-tiered diamond, black and red offer, with partner development forums to be held for each tier every quarter. He also announced there would be a series of technology and Facilities Supplies roadshows later in the year and a focus on the furniture offer.
Over 80 industry vendors informed and entertained delegates in VOW’s ‘Get Switched On’ interactive zone, with Brother, Newell Rubbermaid and Nestlé taking headline spots in the Technology, Traditional Office Products and Facilities Supplies Zones respectively.
The delegates were invited to attend workshops sessions hosted by bokz and Headroom as well as gain insight in Managed Print and Document services at the MPS stand.
VOW+ Partner Principals were invited to exclusive sessions including Meet the Board, chaired by Steve Hilleard, OPI as well as Market Dynamics – an Insight into our Future and a session on Exit or Acquisition.
The day also saw VOW launch its first ever app, enabling delegates to view the agenda, workshops and exhibitor details on their mobile devices and tailor make their own schedules.
The VOW+ Partner Gala Dinner and awards ceremony later that evening was compered by actor, comedian and TV presenter Rob Brydon, with awards given to VOW+ Partners of the Year, ACS Business Supplies, Professional Office Supplies and Braley Business Systems; The VOW Ireland Partner of the year award was handed to Codex; Facilities Supplies Reseller of the Year, Commercial; EOS Reseller of the Year, ACS Business Supplies and Furniture Reseller of the Year, Complete Office Solutions.
Martin Weedall: “There was a hugely impressive turnout for Green Light, our biggest and most inclusive industry event to date and we would like to say thank you to our partners, resellers, suppliers and colleagues for taking the time to share their wisdom and inspiration with each other. The day was all about looking ahead, building platforms for growth and learning from one another and this was certainly achieved. We intend to make next year’s Green Light even bigger and better and we welcome the feedback and views of all who attended this year to help us work towards this.”
Charlie Wallis, Strategic Account Manager, ACCO Brands: “Green Light 2015 did what VOW promised it would. It was a ‘next step’ industry event, it was superbly planned and executed and most importantly, it gave us the chance to meet hundreds of UK resellers ready to discuss our market leading product ranges and support. Roll on Green Light 2016.
Glenn Doyle Anglo Group: “ Time is a precious commodity and therefore to take a day out to attend an event of this sort has to be worthwhile and without question it was an investment worth taking, an impressive line up of speakers with interesting and relevant topics plus a fantastic exhibition with key manufacturers made it an excellent event”.