Tuesday, March 28, 2006

HelmsBriscoe Leads Market with Record Setting Booked Group Revenue and Room Nights-- Meeting Planning Leader Offer Predictions for Booking Patterns in 2007

HelmsBriscoe Leads Market with Record Setting Booked Group Revenue and Room Nights-- Meeting Planning Leader Offer Predictions for Booking Patterns in 2007

HelmsBriscoe, the global leader of independent site selection and RFP services for the expanding meetings business, announced today that it surpassed 2006 company growth goals by achieving $567 million in group revenue, a 30 percent increase from the previous year. In addition, 3.2 million room nights were booked in 2006 at an average rate of $170.

Scottsdale, AZ (PRWEB) January 31, 2007

HelmsBriscoe, the global leader of independent site selection and RFP services for the expanding meetings business, announced today that it surpassed 2006 company growth goals by achieving $567 million in group revenue, a 30 percent increase from the previous year. In addition, 3.2 million room nights were booked in 2006 at an average rate of $170.

Company officials also noted that while it is experiencing remarkable revenue gains, its distribution network is likewise expanding. With 815 associates, HelmsBriscoe delivers the industry's largest and most respected network of meeting procurement specialists spanning 31 countries.

"The message sent by these performance indicators is clear: despite the ubiquitous nature of the Internet, the travel industry continues to outsource meeting procurement at a record pace," said HelmsBriscoe Founder and CEO Roger Helms. "Meeting planners understand the value of the collective experience and purchasing power of HelmsBriscoe, and how our associates can help them deliver the best meetings possible with the highest return on investment."

The Year Ahead

HelmsBriscoe predicts that while the market dynamics change daily, the coming year will continue to be a sellers' market with increased emphasis on revenue management and maximization.

"It is a high demand market, so there is more pressure on hotel staff to concentrate not only on the right pricing strategies, but also book room nights with the right arrival and departure patterns," explained Helms. "Meeting planners are thus put into a situation where they have to look at as many options as possible--whether that be other meeting start days, or possibly even other markets."

Helms notes that while demand is high, at the same time sales support levels at many hotels are being reduced. As a result, many properties are focusing on changing the mix of prices and customers to maximize revenue. For example, a particular property might have large pieces of business already booked, and is looking to augment that with smaller meetings to fill ballrooms, other meeting space, and increase food and beverage revenues.

"Because each market has different inventories, patterns, and pricing options, it is important to identify and evaluate as many properties as possible to find the right mix. On average, our associates evaluate up to three times the number of potential sites than would be assessed by a typical meeting planner for an upcoming event," Helms continued.

Limited inventory will likely cause association meeting planners to book further in advance. Conversely, corporations that are not able to work with long time horizons will continue to book short-term events but will need to broaden their search to more diverse properties and markets.

About HelmsBriscoe

HelmsBriscoe is the global leader of independent site selection and RFP services for over 8,000 corporate, association and government clients that plan off-site meetings and conferences. HelmsBriscoe associates accelerate the decision making process for meeting planners by researching hotels and other meeting venues that match their clients' criteria, negotiating rates and concessions by leveraging its volume purchasing power, and facilitating the contracting process. Founded in 1992, HelmsBriscoe offers the industry's most respected network of procurement specialists, with 800 associates spanning 31 countries. HelmsBriscoe combines its highly experienced global distribution with proprietary knowledge databases of 36,000 hotels containing more than five years of rate histories, the documented experiences and insights from its associates and clients, and a proprietary electronic RFP tool. For more information, visit http://www. HelmsBriscoe. com.

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