May 30 - Britain-based company Tensator is the global leader in managing queues. So it expects to get a boost from the 2012 Olympic Games when around 500,000 extra people will be in London each day. Joanna Partridge reports.
They say the British love queuing. So it seems apt a British firm is the global leader in managing queues at tourist attraction, shops and airports. PTC: London's preparing for an influx of tourists this summer and that'll mean more crowds. But what many visitors may not realise is they're being guided along their journey by Tensator barriers. Tensator is based in Milton Keynes and supplies over 170 countries with crowd control barriers. They're getting a big boost ahead of the Olympics, when over 500,000 extra visitors are expected in the capital. Jo Coxhill from Tensator says the crowd control industry predicts seeing £2 billion extra revenue. SOUNDBITE: Jo Coxhill, Group Head of Marketing, Tensator, saying (English): "For Tensator we're expecting that maybe we'll have a boost of about half a million pounds as a result of this summer's events." The company expects its turnover to increase by almost 20% this year. And they've seen increased demand from retailers. SOUNDBITE: Jo Coxhill, Group Head of Marketing, Tensator, saying (English): "This is our single line queuing system, where we have all of our in queue merchandising products. You can see we have a range of products from our hooks to our troughs to our trays to our in queue merchandising bowls. And at the end here we have our in queue TV, which the retailers can use to advise our products which are in the queue. Or alternatively it can be rented to the manufacturers themselves. Then as you proceed along the queue, you are greeted by our call-forwarding system." Private equity firm Riverside bought Tensator in 2008. Riveside Partner Martin Scott says they've not only provided investment, but also expertise. SOUNDBITE: Martin Scott, Partner, Riverside Europe Partners, saying (English): "We have helped them to grow a business that's based in Milton Keynes into a global leader in its product field. And we've also helped them to expand their strategy and their horizons, acquiring new technologies and new products." UPSOUND Here's one new product you may see at your next airport visit. The virtual assistant can give customers advice 24 hours a day. She's being trialled in a few airport terminals and retailers. Tensator hope this kind of innovation will help them retain their gold medal in queuing long past London 2012. Joanna Partridge, Reuters