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February 2013

Eden Springs shows way ahead for 'joined-up' business communications

Leading workplace drinks provider is cited as ‘best practice’ example of Microsoft® Lync™ platform

Eden Springs, the leading workplace drinks provider, has been identified as an example of business ‘best practice’, following its involvement in Microsoft’s Technology Adoption Program (TAP), which supports early adopters to harness the power of new communication systems in a commercial environment.

Adopting Microsoft’s® Lync™ technology has provided fast-growing Eden with a seamless, unified communications platform – which has transformed the way the company communicates internally and also how it engages with its global customer base comprising over 500,000 office locations. The single platform approach adopted by Eden has transformed the ways it engages with customers - updating them on delivery times and responding rapidly to order queries - and also brought about significant efficiencies in terms of time and cost savings.

After achieving strong organic growth in 2012, and as part of its long-term strategy to dominate the workplace drinks market through its water and coffee offering, Eden’s focus was to unlock the customer service potential within its 2,300 employees working across Europe. Using new technology, Eden realised it had a huge opportunity to improve communications among its team members across borders who conduct regular conference calls, customer service initiatives and internal customer updates. At the same time, the business wanted to elevate service levels to customers, including optimal call quality during service calls.

Specifically, Eden Springs was selected by Microsoft® to participate in its TAP process, using Lync™, the communications platform that integrates with Microsoft Office and other existing tools and systems. Lync™ enables users to connect and collaborate via systems such as instant messaging, advanced conference calling and Skype using a wide range of media devices.

In addition, Lync™ can enhance or replace existing legacy IP PBX telecoms systems, which are commonly used by many SMEs and multinational businesses. The adoption of Lync™ has led to improved productivity, increased mobility, and faster responses for customers, partners, and employees for Eden over a 12 month period. Other benefits included smoother deployment, easier management, and lower cost of ownership of a communications platform.

As part of Eden’s participation in TAP, the company was also able to test Lync™-optimised audio USB equipment. Although Eden did not use headsets before the Microsoft relationship, it opted to test Jabra headsets across the organisation as a way to improve communications between customers and other employees. Eden also selected Jabra because of the wide selection of Lync™-optimised devices Jabra has to offer.

Raanan Zilberman, CEO at Eden Springs, comments: “Being a global organisation presents us with a unique set of communications challenges across borders with many customer locations. We’re always open to new, better ways of engaging with our customers, and working with Microsoft on this project made a great deal of sense to us. While we connect with around 600,000 customers across Europe every month regarding our water solutions, the figure for our coffee customers is currently at 80,000 and rising. Clearly for us, call quality and maximizing business efficiencies plays a key role in enhancing customer communications and overall service levels.”

"We accepted the TAP offer from Microsoft® as we were confident of the business benefits this association would bring. This has already resulted in improved inter-office communications and enhanced customer service levels.”

To find out more about Eden Springs, visit www.edensprings.com

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Notes to Editors

About Eden Springs Group
Eden Springs is Europe's leading provider of drinking water solutions for the workplace, offering a broad range of bottle-fed water coolers, plumbed-in water coolers, PET bottles and Office Coffee Services. The company established its European presence in 1997 and, in less than eight years, became the leading brand for water coolers, with the widest geographical coverage in Europe’s water cooler industry. With a network of branches and water sources across 15 countries, Eden Springs bottles and distributes more than 430 million liters of water annually and services more than half a million offices. Headquartered in Switzerland, Eden Springs has 2,300 employees. www.edensprings.com

Facts and Figures about Eden Springs Group
Turnover: 260 million euros More than 900 service vehicles
23 million 5G bottles sold annually Present in more than half a million offices
Presence in 15 countries 2,200 employees
27 sources of mineral water 134 branches

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For more information please contact:

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Phone: +1-813-313-1732
Email: investorrelations3@cott.com

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