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StarCite reports results for Q3 2005

StarCite, Inc., the provider of On Demand Global Meeting Solutions™, announced that the firm has provided hotels with nearly $493 million in meeting RFP opportunities…

StarCite, Inc., the provider of On Demand Global Meeting Solutions™, announced that the firm has provided hotels with nearly $493 million in meeting RFP opportunities in the third quarter of 2005. Commerce flowing through its Online Marketplace rose 50 percent compared to the same period in 2004. For the first time, StarCite delivered more than 100,000 gross Requests for Proposals to hotels in its database during the quarter. At the current pace, the company expects its growing user base to deliver nearly $2 billion in revenue opportunities to hotels by year-end.

“The growing value of the StarCite Marketplace is evident with record-setting numbers of meeting leads and revenue opportunities delivered to suppliers this quarter,” said Mike Boult, President and CEO of StarCite, Inc., Philadelphia. “In the first nine months of 2005, StarCite has delivered more than $1.4 billion in revenue opportunities to suppliers in our database.”

“During this time, StarCite has helped global corporations save millions of dollars by gaining the visibility and control of meetings necessary to most strategically manage this spend category,”
Boult added.

The global online marketplace for meetings and events, the StarCite Marketplace delivered 11,366 unique RFPs in the third quarter, 48 percent more than the same quarter last year and 16 percent more than the prior quarter. Through the first nine months of 2005, StarCite delivered 31,276 unique RFPs worth $1.4 billion in revenue opportunities to hotels. Each RFP – defined as “unique” – is typically sent to multiple properties or chains for rate and availability, which results in a much larger gross RFP count through StarCite’s marketplace.

StarCite Marketplace RFP Growth

The number of gross RFPs sent through the StarCite Online Marketplace rose 69 percent from the third quarter 2004 to 104,387. Tight demand and higher rates, particularly after Hurricanes Katrina and Rita, prompted the relocation of hundreds of meetings from the Gulf Coast. This led planners to source meetings to more hotels – to an average of 9.18 in the third quarter. These RFPs provided nearly 1.6 million room night leads to hotels, resulting in an average of 140 nights per lead.

On a daily basis, StarCite provides $7.8 million worth of lead opportunities to hotels in its database. These figures exclude private-label sites, which StarCite supplies to Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Fairmont Hotels & Resorts, Omni Hotels, Hyatt Hotels and Resorts, and a number of other suppliers.

Increased Globalization of Corporate Deployments

During the quarter, StarCite closed more than 250 contracts with new or existing clients. StarCite signed three of its most comprehensive global technology and adoption management contracts to help Cisco Systems, Motorola and a financial services firm extend strategic meetings management initiatives. It also expanded relationships with Novo Nordisk, metroConnections and the National Association of Insurance Commissioners. New corporate customers include Unilever North America, CIGNA, CV Therapeutics, and a pharmaceutical firm.

On the supplier side, StarCite extended a contract to provide technology and online marketing to Starwood Hotels and Resorts Worldwide. StarCite also sold its solutions designed for convention and visitor bureaus to the Chicago Convention and Tourism Bureau; LA, Inc. the Convention and Visitors Bureau; Greater Fort Lauderdale Convention & Visitors Bureau; Greater Miami Convention & Visitors Bureau; Irving Convention & Visitors Bureau; and St. Augustine, Ponte Vedra & The Beaches Visitor and Convention Bureau.

On the international front, StarCite officially launched new marketing consortiums in Peru and Scandinavia. In Europe, it began a series of road shows to introduce suppliers to the power and lead generation potential of the StarCite Online Marketplace.

Theodore Koumelis
Co-Founder & Managing Director - Travel Media Applications | Website

Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.