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Tata Communications and Westin Tokyo Launch Japan's First Telepresence Technology - in Collaboration with Cisco
Posted on Thursday, January 27, 2011

Tokyo - January 27, 2011 – The Westin Tokyo, today announces the launch of state-of-the-art virtual meeting technology, in conjunction with Tata Communications and Cisco. The Westin Tokyo is the first hotel in Japan to introduce this high definition video communications technology.

Telepresence provides life-like, high-definition, conferencing facilities with superior audio and video, allowing participants to meet their colleagues, customers and business partners across a virtual table. Participants in Telepresence meetings will feel that they are in the same room together regardless of where they are individually located in the world. This creates the potential to improve business interaction through better and more frequent meetings and results in stronger customer relationships and accelerated sales cycles, delivering improved project management and tighter integration of remote offices.

Located in Central Tokyo, the public Telepresence room will link to the wider Tata Communications Telepresence network via the Tata Communications Global Meeting Exchange. The Exchange enables meetings to take place between any private or public room on its network; as well as rooms on the networks of Tata Communications' Intercarrier-Exchange partners, BT and Telefonica, and the National Lambda Rail network, which links leading U.S.A. universities.

"Our public and private room network, together with our Global Meeting Exchange, supports our goal to facilitate as many connections for our customers as possible via Telepresence. We currently offer the widest reach for Global business-to-business meetings and range of connections, making Telepresence a truly global collaboration tool," says Peter Quinlan, Vice President, Telepresence Managed Services, Tata Communications. "Both Global Meeting Exchange and our Intercarrier Exchange initiatives with other operators have been industry firsts. They have enabled us to continue to provide the broadest number of connections, regardless of service provider or operator."

As part of this extensive business ecosystem, the Tokyo room will connect to public and private rooms throughout Tata Communications' network and partner networks, spanning 29 locations across five continents. This network reach makes Telepresence a truly global collaboration tool.

"The launch of the new Cisco TelePresence meeting room at The Westin Tokyo is another example of Starwood's commitment to innovation. It offers our clients an exciting new meeting solution that facilitates  'face-to-face' meetings in the same room, regardless of global location," says Lothar Pehl, Regional Vice President, Japan, Korea and Guam Starwood. "As the world and the hotel industry grow increasingly more global, Starwood is continuing its legacy of innovation by looking at tomorrow's travelers and really understanding, how they want to meet."

The new Telepresence suite is part of a year-long partnership between Starwood Hotels and Tata Communications which covers custom-built Telepresence rooms in a number of the group's global properties. Starwood unveiled its first in-hotel Telepresence meeting suites in early 2010 at The Sheraton Toronto, W. Chicago City Center and the Sheraton on the Park Sydney. These launches were then followed by the Sheraton Kuwait Hotel & Towers, The Sheraton New York Hotels & Towers, The Westin Los Angeles Airport, The Westin Georgetown-DC, Le Meridien Etoile Paris, Le Meridien Brussels, Le Meridien Munich, The Le Meridien Parkhotel Frankfurt, The Westin San Francis and The Sheraton Dallas Hotel.

"The partnership with Tata Communications is testimony to the innovations that Starwood Hotels & Resorts is pursuing for our global guests' needs." says Andreas Trauttmansdorff General Manager, The Westin Tokyo. "We are seeing an increasing demand to incorporate technology, virtual meetings and social media into our hotel's meeting offerings. We are thrilled to now have a Telepresence room. Our hotel's current meeting and conference facilities have been highly awarded over the years and this new addition will undoubtedly continue to position us as the corporate hotel of choice."

The public room facility offers users who do not have Telepresence rooms within their company, access to this cutting-edge technology at an affordable hourly rate. Tata Communications currently has the largest global network of public Telepresence rooms and is present across five continents covering the USA, Canada, the UK, France, Belgium, Germany, the Netherlands, Kuwait, the United Arab Emirates, South Africa, India, The Philippines, Singapore and Australia.