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 Minneapolis Convention Bureau Assigns Internet-based Citywide Housing Technology to Passkey.com
 
BOSTON - June 3, 1999-- The Greater Minneapolis Convention & Visitors Association (CVA), the first major convention bureau to use the Internet for convention housing, is the latest to award a contract for Internet-based citywide convention housing processing technology to Passkey.com, Inc. (<http://www.passkey.com>), the leading provider of Internet-enabled convention and group hotel reservation solutions for the meetings and convention industry.

"Minneapolis helped start a trend among CVBs in using the Internet to implement a housing bureau solution," said Roger Paradis, Passkey.com's president and CEO. He said Minneapolis will use Passkey.com's proprietary ResDesk(SM) software to book hotel room reservations for meetings and conventions.

Growing List of CVB Customers

Passkey.com's CVB customer list is growing rapidly, with Minneapolis joining the St. Louis Convention and Visitors Commission and the Nashville Convention and Visitors Bureau as the most recent additions. Paradis said Passkey.com now provides Internet-based convention housing or event-specific reservation services through CVBs and/or independent housing bureaus in 18 of the top U.S. group meeting cities. He said Passkey.com is on pace to process approximately 48,000 reservations in April-May, which will generate some $20 million in hotel room revenues. 

Passkey.com an 'Ideal Partner for Minneapolis'

"Passkey.com is the ideal partner for Minneapolis," said Karyn Gruenberg, vice president marketing for Greater Minneapolis CVA. "We were the first convention authority to handle housing on the Internet, but saw it wasn't possible to grow services on our own while keeping up with the many changes involved. Passkey.com offered an easy and proven solution." Ms. Gruenberg said "Year 2000 will be especially busy in Minneapolis, with 75,000-plus expected to attend the Alcoholics Anonymous convention, the largest ever at the Minneapolis Convention Center."

How Passkey.com ResDesk Works

Passkey.com's ResDesk benefits all meeting and convention participants by providing Internet-accessible real-time information to everyone in the reservation process.

ResDesk stores a group's room-block inventory in a secure, password-protected online database that is simultaneously accessible to call center agents and attendees via the Internet. Meeting planners, hotels and housing providers, such as convention and visitor bureaus, can access the database at any time to generate detailed reports and manage unlimited sub-blocks, live, throughout the entire housing process. Attendees can go online to inquire about room availability, amenities and rates, book directly into the block in real time, and receive immediate confirmation of their reservation at the negotiated convention rate. Attendees can also fax or mail room requests, or telephone the call center, where operators are online.

Passkey.com operates a world-class, scalable call center serving the needs of its customers, and provides ResDesk as an in-house software solution, complete with training and support.

Beyond Convention Housing -- Leisure Component

Passkey.com will support leisure functionality for qualified CVBs already using the ResDesk system for convention housing. CVBs that create a leisure business plan, market it and staff it appropriately can quite successfully use ResDesk as a powerful leisure reservation solution.

Passkey.com, Inc. (<http://www.passkey.com>), is the leading provider of Internet-enabled convention and group hotel reservations solutions for the $83 billion meetings and convention industry. Along with Greater Minneapolis, Passkey.com has contracts to provide Internet-based citywide convention housing processing technology to CVBs in Atlanta, Baltimore, Boston, Detroit, Kansas City, Nashville, Orlando and St. Louis, is under contract for specific group events through bureaus in Cleveland, New Orleans and Seattle, and has contracts with independent housing providers working with hotels to manage events in Las Vegas, Panama City (Fla.), San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, and Cancun. ResDesk, Passkey.com's flagship offering, is the leading Internet-enabled convention and group hotel reservation solution. Benefitting from a recently-announced strategic alliance with Pegasus Systems (NASDAQ: PEGS), Passkey.com provides a seamless end-to-end reservations solutions for group business, with direct reservation connections to potentially thousands of hotels.

The Passkey.com Convention Housing Network connects all industry participants using Internet-based software and a shared, centralized reservation database to automate and simplify the complex task of making, managing and acknowledging reservations, while bringing valuable new components to the process. Formerly Passkey Systems, Inc., Passkey.com, Inc. is headquartered in Quincy, Massachusetts.

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Contact:
Passkey.com, Inc. 
http://www.passkey.com
Sasha Galland 
617/328-4800 
sgalland@passkey.com 
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Also See: Nashville CVB Using Internet-enabled Convention and Group Hotel Reservation Solutions Provided by Passkey.com / May 1999 

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