Western Europe VP Meets Senior European Officials on Green IT and Security Policy
May 23, 2008 VP Western Europe Michel Bensadoun recently took part in a series of successful meetings of high-tech business leaders with senior government officials in Brussels and Paris. The meetings were organised by Symantec Government Relations in conjunction with AeA Europe, an industry association promoting the interests of US high-tech companies in Europe. The key aims were to raise Symantec's profile as thought leader in Green IT and security policy and to support the region's business and public policy objectives.
In Brussels, Michel met with EU Commissioner, Viviane Reding, to voice Symantec's continued support for the Commissioner's efforts to introduce a Data Breach Notification regime in Europe. It was also the opportunity to broaden the scope of our EU high-level government advocacy to Green IT in good time for the upcoming EU initiative on ICT for energy efficiency that Ms. Reding will be driving.
"At a time when the future European green policy and market is being mapped out," said Michel, "it is important we send a clear message to decision makers that, provided the right incentives, our green technology can help the EU reach its goal to cut carbon emissions by 20% by 2020." Further to this meeting, the Commissioner asked Symantec to provide additional information on the company's Greening Data Centers technologies as a case study.
Michel then met with EU Energy Commissioner Piebalgs' head of cabinet and the cabinet members. This was Symantec's opportunity to open new doors at high level in the Commission for the company's Green IT advocacy, positioning software as an enabler for energy efficiency. The news of the opening of Symantec European Research Labs in France was also well received as a mark of the company's commitment to EU R&D.
In Paris, Michel met with the decision makers which will drive the EU policy agenda on Green IT and Security during the upcoming French presidency of the EU (July-December 2008).
The meeting with the Head of Cabinet by Hervé Novelli, State Secretary for Business from the Ministry of Economy, was a chance to present Symantec's credentials in France and Europe and its investment in jobs, innovation and online security awareness-raising.
The next meeting was hosted by the Head of Cabinet of Jean-Pierre Jouyet, State Secretary for European Affairs, and focused on the upcoming French presidency's agenda for Security, Green ICT and Research and Development. This Ministry will be playing a pivotal role in the next half year and is responsible for pushing through legislation important to Symantec such as the review of the e-Privacy directive (Breach notification) and the EU energy package where it is important that the ICT role as energy efficiency enabler is properly reflected.
Michel later held a successful meeting with Jean-Louis Borloo's cabinet, Minister of Environment, to address Green policy. As a result, Symantec has been invited to join the Minister's expert group on Green IT which is a great opportunity to continue to push the company's Green message going forward.
Finally, Michel met with the US Ambassador to France, Craig Stapleton, and US Special Envoy to the EU, Boyden Grey, for an open discussion on US high tech companies' opportunities in France and how to take full advantage of the current "rapprochement" between the US and the new French administration.
"Michel's visit to the European Union institutions and the new French administration was an opportunity for us as a company to kick off a constructive dialogue on Green IT with European governments at the highest political level," said Sarah Greenwood, Government Relations. "It is imperative that we leverage such opportunities to defend our policy agenda on issues important to Symantec's present and future business interests in these areas."