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About Us  >  News Releases  >  August 21, 2003

News Releases

CONTACT: Sho Dozono
President and CEO
Phone: (503) 294-6471

Azumano Travel Expands into Seattle-Area Market Place

PORTLAND, OREGON (November 24, 2003) - Azumano Travel is poised to assume ownership of four wholly owned American Express Travel Service offices in the Seattle area, it was announced today by Azumano president and CEO Sho Dozono. The offices will be operated by Azumano but retain the American Express brand as their primary identity.

Transition of the American Express offices to Azumano will take place between mid and late December. One office is located in downtown Seattle at 600 Stewart Street and a second is in Redmond at 7826 166th Avenue NE. These offices currently provide leisure travel services to American Express Cardmembers as well as to the general public. The other two offices involve onsite operations within the Watermark Credit Union in downtown Seattle and the King County Credit Union in Issaquah. These operations will continue to provide leisure travel services to the credit union memberships, pending approval. Employees of all four offices have been offered positions with Azumano.

"This is an exciting opportunity for us to expand our customer base and extend our service area from the Willamette Valley in Oregon to the Seattle area in Washington, and the move supports our long-term business strategy of becoming a major player in the Pacific Northwest regional market place," said Azumano president and CEO Sho Dozono.

"On the basis of dollar volume and employee count, we are already the largest travel management company in the Pacific Northwest, and this move further ensures our ability to maintain a prominent position in the industry for the long haul," Dozono added. "It does not indicate a desire to transplant our core business to Seattle, and we will continue to maintain our headquarters in Portland. However, as our Oregon economy continues to stagnate, our entry into a larger arena enables us to widen our reach in an increasingly competitive global market place. Furthermore, we welcome the chance to strengthen our relationship with American Express and to work more closely together to grow our Network strategically and to provide uninterrupted, quality service to our customers."

Azumano Travel was founded in 1949 in Portland, Oregon. The company was recently named by TravelAge West as a "Best of the West" travel agency and identified as #7 among the leading revenue producers of the 14 Western states. The Azumano Group (retail and wholesale) employs a staff of 250 and has sales revenues in excess of $150 million, with offices in Portland (2), Beaverton, Tigard, Salem, Albany, Corvallis, Eugene, and Vancouver (USA). Azumano's largest national corporate account is Wells Fargo, which it has served since 1988 through a dedicated reservations center at Azumano's headquarters in Portland.

Azumano maintains competency as a provider of both traditional agency services and e-fulfillment services. The company offers Azumano Express powered by CheapTickets® as an alternative to other major Internet booking sites. Azumano Express provides comparable discounted airfares, hotels and car rental rates for the leisure traveler. Azumano Online powered by Travelport Corporate Solutions™ is available to registered corporate customers and is designed to reduce costs, increase efficiencies and simplify business travel.

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