Philadelphia-based StarCite Inc. announced it has secured $15 million in funding from current investors, including Internet Capital Group, TPG Ventures, and Norwest Venture Partners. StarCite said it plans to use the proceeds from the funding to support its continued global growth and ongoing enhancements to its suite of meetings management technology offerings.
StarCite said it is experiencing fast-growing demand from corporate buyers and meeting suppliers with a record $7.5 billion in meeting and event business passing through its online marketplace last year, a 30 percent increase over 2006. This volume of meeting business represented more than 20 million room nights from some of the world's largest corporations.
"Meetings have long been one of the last unexplored frontiers of spend management for corporations, but this is rapidly changing," said Keith Forshew, chief operating officer of StarCite. "Companies are zeroing in on value-adding technologies that improve both visibility and control over their meeting investment. At the same time, hotels, venues and other meeting suppliers are searching for ways to connect electronically with potential customers. Our business fulfills both of these needs."
In other company developments over the past 12 months, StarCite said it has continued to introduce new product offerings and partnerships to improve meeting management practices for both buyers and suppliers, including: Small Meetings Solution for groups of 50 or less, a partnership with American Express Global Commercial Card to launch meetings360, a distribution agreement with Pegasus Solutions Inc, an integration with Orbitz Worldwide, a partnership with Meeting Strategies Worldwide for a MeetGreen program and a benchmarking study on best practices in meetings management.