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Thames Valley IT & Telecoms Forum: A game changer

7 April 2017

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Business leaders gathered to exchange ideas at one of the Thames Valley’s most respected IT industry forums on 6 April. The Thames Valley IT & Telecoms Forum, which took place at Verizon’s office at the International Business Park, Reading, was voted an overwhelming success by delegates.

Guest speaker Andrew Twigg, Director at TWG Systems, delivered a riveting talk on the ‘Evolution of Internet Addiction’, exploring powerful methods used by the online gaming industry to “get people into the game”. Andrew pointed out that many individual games make millions of pounds everyday with the biggest companies taking $10bn in a single year, but are reluctant to shout about their successes. He described how free-to-play games and the use of in-game currency such as “gems” purchased through apps on mobile devices were the industry’s key sales strategy.

During the break-out session, delegates looked at the economic and social impact of online gaming and made comparisons between in-game currency and incentives such as loyalty schemes, retail points, bolt-on services and product upgrades offered by businesses.

The delegates agreed that what is often classed as an addiction may also be viewed as enjoyment, or in commercial terms, “a great customer experience”. They said the main advantage that the gaming industry has over businesses is instant access to a vast amount of valuable data about their customers’ activities. Getting to the bottom line, they concluded that “we all want people to be addicted to our businesses”.

Commenting on the event, IT business owner Tony Donoghue from MagikosIT said: “I always enjoy these events. It’s the only networking group where IT people can talk in our own industry language and collaborate with like-minded people.”

Event partner John Panczak from LAUDIS Business Advisors said: “Our aim is to bring together people from the IT and Telecoms sector; to encourage them to engage with one another, share ideas, best practice; even to collaborate on joint projects. We have many examples of successful partnerships that have been born at the Forum over the years.”

The Thames Valley IT & Telecoms Forum is hosted by Barclays Bank, LAUDIS Business Advisors, James Cowper Kreston and Clarkslegal LLP.

For more information about the next Thames Valley IT & Telecoms Forum, which will take place in June 2017, please speak to Lizzie Uzzell at James Cowper Kreston on 0118 9590261, or email