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Exstream Software Announces 2004 Visionary Award Winners

Press release from the issuing company

June 22, 2004 -- Exstream Software, Inc. announced today the winners of its 2004 Visionary Awards. The awards were presented at the third annual User Conference held in Lexington, Kentucky, May 10-13, 2004. Twenty-five complex applications using Exstream’s Dialogue software to address a variety of challenging business requirements were submitted from the more than 155 customers who attended the conference. Awards were given in five categories, including Best Designed Application, Most Significant Return on Investment, Most Personalized Application, Most Improved Time to Market and Most Sophisticated Application. The Best Designed Application was awarded to DST Output, a Kansas City-based provider of customized print and electronic documents. DST used Dialogue to produce a full color personalized plan participant statement for a leading provider of financial services and products. The statement was specifically designed to reduce the total cost of servicing each account by inserting dynamically incorporated 1:1 marketing messages that encouraged participants to use the plan administrator web site for self-service. The statement also included a newsletter with targeted articles on investing and diversification to educate and engage participants, replacing an expensive and unreliable bulk mailing sent to a local human resource contact. By consolidating information and inserting only what was pertinent to the recipient, Dialogue made it possible for DST to reduce the overall page count of the statement from twelve pages to one duplexed sheet, resulting in a postal savings of 22 cents per package and a significant savings on paper. The total savings incurred with the new statement format offset the increased cost of producing the statement in full color. The Most Significant Return on Investment award was given to Vestcom International, Inc., a leading provider of business and marketing communications, e-marketing and retail marketing services. The sophisticated direct mail program, developed with The Borgata Hotel, Casino and Spa, in Atlantic City, New Jersey, was designed to support their player loyalty program and encourage repeat visits. Dialogue’s ability to support a variety of data and file formats made it possible for Vestcom to use data collected from Borgata’s multiple data sources to develop two highly personalized digital direct mail pieces. The first piece included full-color variable targeted images and relevant offers based on activities chosen on the initial visit to attract guests back for a second visit. Dialogue’s high-performance engine made it possible to turn this complex application around and have it in the mail within 72 hours after the guest left the property. The second piece involved a personalized letter recapping all subsequent visits to the property and included a summary of points earned while at the resort, and variable options for spending those points depending on the guest’s prior interests. Vestcom reports Dialogue handled all the requirements of the complex design with ease, including business rules, data integration and multiple output requirements, producing successful results that included a faster time to market and a response rate ten times higher than traditional mailings. Fidelity Investments, Inc. was honored with Most Improved Time to Market for using Dialogue to create a workflow environment that allowed for quick and precise development and testing procedures for its employee stock option and purchase plan kits. Dialogue's ability to store graphic images for dynamic insertion at run time allowed Fidelity to design 90 percent of the kit as a dynamically imported TIFF image. This made it possible for Fidelity business partners and other groups within Fidelity to make revisions needed on a daily basis without the assistance of the IT composition development group, removing a major bottleneck from the workflow. Additionally, Dialogue’s support of a full range of output formats including AFP, PDF, PostScript and 2-up, allowed Fidelity to dramatically reduce the time it took for testing, validation and production printing of the kits. Dialogue’s functionality significantly improved Fidelity’s workflow, decreasing turnaround time for producing the kits from several days to less than an hour. The Most Personalized Application was awarded to Financial Engines, Inc., a financial advisory firm based in Palo Alto, California. Using Dialogue’s Advanced Campaign and Tracking module, Financial Engines developed a Personal Plan Preview for use in the welcome packet its clients receive. The document contains highly personalized messages and information that explains individual investment strategies to new program members, offers suggestions for adjusting contributions and risk based on individual need and serves as a vehicle for members to review and update their plans. Virtually every element of the Plan Preview is personalized. Financial Engines reports Dialogue’s robust capabilities also provided an extremely fast implementation time for this very complex application. The Most Sophisticated Application was presented to LASON, Inc., a global provider of integrated outsourcing services. Mailing more than 500,000 collection letters per day, LASON set out to reduce the cycle time of its collection letter system, reduce the time it took to package them and provide more control to the print operations staff. LASON employed Dialogue to develop a system that reduced cycle time for production of the letters from more than five hours to just 30 minutes. Dialogue’s Application Consolidator and Output Sorting and Bundling modules put control back in the hands of LASON’s print operations staff by simplifying the production process and providing the flexibility to print break large print runs into smaller ones, allowing them to create a more flexible and cost effective print schedule. “These award-winning applications are testimony to the fact that Dialogue is the most comprehensive solution on the market for enterprise personalization,” said Davis Marksbury, president and CEO of Exstream Software. “What is more impressive, however, is the innovation and creativity of our customers. I am impressed with each application submitted and compliment our customers on their ability to use Dialogue to its fullest capacity.” The Exstream User Conference is held annually to provide customers with an opportunity to network with other users, learn new ways to impact customer communications, increase productivity, improve customer service and grow their business. The 2004 event was sponsored in part by IBM, APT Digital and Prinova Technologies.