News

1 Aug 2012

TOD fees

Russell Bennett from Microhire QLD sends this:

Your AV Industry Needs You!!!

·         Imagine not being able to use your favoured and trusted AV company when doing events!

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·         Imagine now , not having the right to choice your AV supplier on its merits – Price, Value or professionalism!

·         Imagine in a few years’ time there is a lot less choice in audio visual companies and technology because only a handful of AV companies that  hold contracts with major venues will be what’s left to choose from!
 
What is a TOD Charge?
A TOD charge is a fee charged by many major venues if you utilise the services of another AV Supplier instead of their “Preferred or In-house Contracted” Supplier.  In general my peers in the industry feel that if need be a 3hr TOD fee during bump in or bump out may be warranted when needing to integrate with the venues existing infrastructure.

BUT what is happening is an increasingly large number of venues are now charging massive by the hour and for every hour and every room a client uses their ”non-preferred supplier”, clients using venues are receiving bills for literally thousands of dollars (I have one this week that was quoted $4,500).

Some venues are even charging the non-preferred supplier a large fee to use their loading dock, goods lift and electricity if you don’t use their preferred supplier.  – Make no mistake these kind of charges and the excessive TOD charges are nothing more than a some unscrupulous venues being very greedy and protecting the commissions they receive from their preferred or in-house supplier.

The legality of these charges is also questionable but most certainly the intent is certainly immoral from a competition point of view.

What’s the Issue?
·         Besides the fact that you really get absolutely no value on paying a TOD outside of 3 hours for the bump in or bump out;
·         Because these charges are becoming increasingly higher clients are having to choose between paying more to use a cheaper quote or a valued supplier or just use the in-house supplier;
·         AV companies without venue contracts and boutique suppliers are unable to compete in the market place and are close to the wall or can’t invest in new technologies or staff
·         There will be less creativity or problems solving to challenges put forward by clients events, less skilled staff and a complacent in-house supplier with a venue knowing nothing about new trends available because all they see is the same supplier in-house every day and the way they do things.

What can you do?
Last week the CEO of the Meetings Events Australia, Linda Gaunt, announced that they are in fact listening to concerns being aired by members on this issue and the devastating effects it is already having on many suppliers including my local area up here in South East Queensland.  Linda Gaunt  has announced MEA is “Currently organising a facilitated forum in Sydney and inviting involved industry practitioners to attend and have their say on the matter. Audio Visual Companies, Event Management Companies and Venues will be invited to this independently facilitated forum in Sydney to have their say and work their way through this situation in a professional manner. If you are working within the involved sectors at a senior level and would like further information please contact her”

·         I urge you if possible to register your interest in attending the meeting in Sydney and contact her NOW to register your interest. (1 day and an airfare to Sydney is note much compared to the damage this issue is doing)

·         If you can’t attend but would like to show your support please email Linda Gaunt and express your support for a maximum 3hr TOD fee or none at all;

·         If you’re an AV Supplier stand up and be counted and seen – on an issue this important to your business future it would be a misjudgement not to show your support, because you fear any kind of reprisal or short term financial implications – the long-term survival of your business and our industry is of greater concern.
·         If you book venues refuse to sign a contract that contains TOD charges – unless they are reasonable such as 3hrs

To register your interest in attending the MEA Forum on TOD charges in Sydney once a date OR just to ensure your  opposition and effects to your business are heard at the meeting,  please email Linda Gaunt on lgaunt@mea.org.au or call (02) 9929-5400.

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