CES 2009: Three Booths and a Clapping Toy Monkey?
If a global manufacturer of computer hardware like Belkin’s not exhibiting at CES, who is? I posed that question jokingly earlier this morning, but turns out there’s a very real and ugly answer to it:
Not Seagate (STX).
Not Logitech (LOGI).
Not Cisco (CSCO).
And not Sanyo, either.
All six companies have abandoned plans to exhibit on the Consumer Electronics Show floor. Like Belkin, they are all opting for the more intimate and inexpensive floorspace of a Vegas hotel room. Said Seagate spokesperson Woody Monroy, “We haven’t pulled out of CES…we’re just taking a different approach.” Cisco offered this statement on the matter:
On our Q1 FY ’09 earnings call on November 5 we announced that we will be reducing expenses for FY09 by over $1B from our annualized expense run rate, given the challenging macroeconomic environment. We are targeting reductions in travel and discretionary-related expenses, including offsite meetings, outside services, equipment, events, trade shows, prototypes, marketing and other activities. Given this focus on reducing costs, we are modifying our participation in the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas in January 2009.
We have several speakers presenting in the various CES sessions, and Cisco chairman and CEO John Chambers will be delivering a keynote at the conference, as well. We are focusing our CES presence on our direct customers, press and analysts in order to create a more intimate event and reduce expenses. We look forward to an exciting CES 2009 with multiple product announcements that will reinforce Cisco’s consumer strategy. We remain committed to the consumer market, and we believe our cost control focus at this time is appropriate. In support of our CES presence, we will be utilizing Cisco’s world-class Web 2.0 collaboration technologies, such as TelePresence and WebEx, to maintain essential customer and partner communication. Cisco will have compelling demonstration areas and meeting rooms in the Venetian hotel in Las Vegas as we have for the past several years.”