|ARLINGTON, Va., August 17, 2005-BridgeStreet Worldwide, a leading international provider of corporate housing to business and leisure travelers, today announced that it has received a 2005 Technology ROI Award, which recognizes companies that have successfully used technology to produce positive bottom-line business and financial results. The award is presented annually by Nucleus Research, a global provider of IT research and advisory services, and TechTarget's CIO Decisions magazine.
BridgeStreet was cited for the dramatic results it achieved as a result of its deployment last year of a Web-based, customer relationship management (CRM) tool from salesforce.com that centralized customer information for BridgeStreet's national sales team. The technology helped facilitate an extreme makeover of the widely dispersed sales organization's culture, resulting in a 10 percent increase in total annual revenue, despite a sales force reduction; and an average increase in sales per person of 42 percent. The company's total investment in the project was approximately $400,000, which resulted in a 153% return on investment.
"Prior to implementing the new CRM program from salesforce.com, our sales associates were scattered across the globe and narrowly focused on their own respective regions, with less focus on servicing our customers internationally," said Lee Curtis, BridgeStreet's president. "Our goal was to find a system that would allow us to provide the best possible coordinated service for our clients by centralizing the data to maximize the productivity of our sales teams. With the implementation of this program, we were able to fundamentally change our sales culture into one based on collaboration rather than competition. At the same time, we achieved our best financial results ever, and with a more efficient workforce."
Jon Wohlfert, senior VP of sales and marketing who oversaw the changeover, noted that the new system also has helped the company with recruiting. "Having a sophisticated CRM system makes BridgeStreet a more attractive prospective employer, which has allowed us to hire stronger players. And, it gives our associates the tools to better serve our clients."
Wohlfert added, "This strategy fit nicely under our mission umbrella of making corporate housing easy, both for our clients and, internally, for our associates. We will continue to pursue technology solutions that streamline all aspects of our industry to achieve our mission."
BridgeStreet was one of 10 winners, including the United States Coast Guard and the National Institutes for Health, selected to receive the 2005 Technology ROI Award in the program's third year. Companies eligible for the awards are headquartered in the United States and technology projects had to be installed and in operation no later than January 1, 2004.
"The winners of this year's technology ROI awards understand the critical link between IT strategy and business goals," said Ian Campbell, CEO of Nucleus Research. "All of these companies have a proven track record and a focus on delivering tangible, measurable benefits that ultimately justified their companies' expenditures. Equally as important as cost savings and a good ROI are process or productivity innovations that advance the business."
BridgeStreet Worldwide, a subsidiary of Interstate Hotels & Resorts (NYSE:IHR), is one of the world's largest Corporate Housing and Serviced Apartment providers. BridgeStreet and its network of Global Partners offer corporate apartments located in over 90 MSAs throughout the United States and internationally. BridgeStreet properties meet uncompromising standards of quality, comfort and service. For more information about the company or to learn more about how BridgeStreet is Making Corporate Housing Easy, visit www.bridgestreet.com or call 1-800-BSTREET.
This press release contains "forward-looking statements," within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, about BridgeStreet, a wholly owned subsidiary of Interstate Hotels & Resorts, including those statements regarding future operating results and the timing and
composition of revenues, among others, and statements containing words such as "expects," "believes" or "will," which indicate that those statements are forward-looking. Except for historical information, the matters discussed in this press release are forward-looking statements that are subject to certain risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially, including changes in the national economy, economic conditions generally and the real estate market specifically, the threat of future terrorist attacks, governmental actions, legislative and regulatory changes, availability of debt and equity capital, interest rates, competition, supply and demand for lodging facilities in our current and proposed market areas, and the company's ability to manage integration and growth. Additional risks are discussed in Interstate Hotels & Resorts' filings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including Interstate Hotels & Resorts annual report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2004.