Smart Traveling at Area

Finnish travel agency deploys CRM solution to increase sales effectiveness, enhance customer service

Barcelona, Spain — April 18, 2005 — Area, a leading Finnish travel agency, has chosen Siebel CRM (customer relationship management) OnDemand to manage relationships with more than 7,000 corporate travel customers.

The firm said it is using Siebel Systems' hosted CRM solution to create a single view of customers across multiple channels in order to increase sales effectiveness, improve sales productivity, and enhance customer satisfaction.

Established 70 years ago, Area is one of the largest travel agencies in Finland. The company provides a broad range of travel services for leisure and corporate customers. It employs 300 staff members and operates a network of 20 offices in Finland. Area is a wholly owned subsidiary of Finnair and is an American Express Travel Service representative in Finland.

"Siebel CRM OnDemand provides Area with one common view of our corporate customers, which we are using to effectively plan and to meet their travel needs," said Hannu Holtari, Development manager, Area. "We chose CRM OnDemand because it allows us to quickly roll out an effective CRM strategy. Siebel CRM OnDemand was the most flexible, functionally rich, and easiest to use of all the hosted CRM solutions we evaluated. The hosted approach also allows us to avoid the up-front investment in a complex technology infrastructure."

Prior to the introduction of Siebel CRM OnDemand, Area's relationship managers maintained relationships with corporate customers using a variety of different, disconnected tools and systems. These ranged from spreadsheets to e-mail and paper-based systems.

With more and more customers using the Internet to manage their travel needs directly, Area needed to understand more about the needs, behavior and preferences of this group of customers in order to retain their business. A consolidated customer view enables the company to better satisfy customers, effectively sell travel services and increase sales efficiency.

Siebel CRM OnDemand also provides a complete picture of each corporate travel customer, including the company profile, key decision-makers, contract information and revenue potential. The hosted CRM solution offers Area the ability to schedule meetings with travel prospects, track priorities and manage due dates. Area is also using integrated analytics functionality to review sales cycles, average deal sizes and corporate travel schedules.

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