Cendant`s Hotel Group to Introduce Satellite Communications

Beginning this month, Cendant Corporation`s hotel group will introduce a high-speed satellite communications service designed to improve access to the company`s central reservations system as well as provide Internet connectivity for a substantial portion of its more than 6,300 franchised hotels in North America.

The service, called DIRECWAY®, was developed by Hughes Network Systems Inc. of Germantown, Md. It also will be used to support each hotel`s property management system, perform remote support and provide e-mail, Web-based services, access to proprietary databases and remote training. Hughes will operate and support the service. The DIRECWAY satellite communications service will be installed first at those Super 8®, Days Inn®, Ramada®, Travelodge®, Howard Johnson®, Knights Inn® and Villager hotels that currently rely on telephone dial-up connections. All Wingate Inn® franchised hotels already have broadband connections. “DIRECWAY is based on proven technology and is designed to meet Cendant`s specific needs for broadband deployment, including central reservations system access and high-speed Internet connectivity,” said Mike Kennedy, hotel group senior vice president & chief information officer. “This service will facilitate our plans to deliver content-rich Web portal sites and online reporting to our franchised hotels.”