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R.K. Black Becomes First Multi-City Franchisee for The Utility Company

12 Jun, 2007

R.K. Black Becomes First Multi-City Franchisee for The Utility Company

Ottawa, Canada – The Utility Company, a global managed service franchise that provides information technology (IT) as a utility to small and medium-sized businesses (SMB), today announced a cornerstone organization for its market-defining Beyond Managed Services™ franchise program. R.K. Black Inc., is a 52 year old, 90-employee independent office equipment dealer headquartered in Oklahoma City, with offices in Kansas City and St. Louis.

The Utility Company was founded to address the two major problems plaguing businesses today:
Overspending – the fact that the average business spends $360 per user per month on technology for an industry total of $400 billion annually.
Underutilization – unfortunately only 15% of this investment in technology is actually utilized.

Today, the convergence of technology including network/desktop, business applications, Web/Internet, copier/printer and telecommunications provides businesses with an increasing desire to consolidate (or converge) their suppliers, as well.

Beyond Managed Services allows the IT and vertical channels, such as office equipment dealers and telecom resellers, to painlessly add recurring technology service revenues to their existing business. Through our Utility Business System we have created a turnkey model for SMB service organizations and professionals to deliver managed IT services to businesses primarily ranging from 5 to 100 employees.

To expand their service business, visionary office equipment dealers like R.K. Black are seeing the need to manage the entire customer infrastructure to provide more value to their customers as their customers are becoming increasingly more reliant on technology. In fact, with the majority of today’s copier and printers now being networked, the dealers are already being asked to become the trusted single-source technology provider.

“R.K. Black is one of the top service organizations I’ve seen – the quality of their leadership, depth of personnel and attention to customer service is unparalleled and clearly the reason for their success,” stated Mark Scott, President of The Utility Company. “Having them as one of our flagship Utility Service Providers takes our franchise system to a new level. The combination of their expertise with our services provides businesses in the Mid-West with one source for technology.”

“Office equipment dealers, like us, are now faced with the challenge of diversifying our business to remain competitive in the marketplace and address the convergence of technology,” stated Chris Black, President of R.K. Black Inc. “Our partnership with The Utility Company allows us to expand our portfolio of services into other areas of technology and provide our customers a complete solution at a fixed fee per month.

“Adding the Utility Service Center remote monitoring and management services and the live helpdesk will also allow us to automate a lot of our current office equipment support contracts and proactively uncover what are network issues versus copier/printer issues before we dispatch a technician,” stated Cynthia Black, Vice President.

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