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21c Museum Hotels Selects Widen DAM to Mobilize Digital Asset Collection for Company Expansion

Growing Hospitality Brand to Organize Photos, Improve Website and Provide Marketing, PR, Design and Museum Teams With Self-Service Access to Critical Assets

MADISON, WI -- (Marketwired) -- 04/15/14 -- 21c Museum Hotels, an award-winning boutique hotel and restaurant group, has selected the Widen Media Collective to mobilize a large collection of photos, videos and other assets. The DAM system will support the company's expansion into new markets by providing internal departments and external partners with self-service access to the company's most important digital assets.

Founded in 2006, 21c Museum Hotels is a highly acclaimed hospitality brand dedicated to bringing contemporary art into daily life. In 2013, Condé Nast Traveler readers ranked all three 21c properties among the top 100 hotels in the world.

To support marketing, PR and design initiatives, 21c amassed an enormous collection of photos showcasing the art installations, architecture and design of the properties. However, 21c's communications team decided that the company needed a better way to organize, access and share this collection as the brand expanded into new cities and regions. Specifically, the company wanted a solution that could be used by internal departments and external partners. After reviewing a variety of DAM solutions, 21c chose the Widen Media Collective

"The user interface played big role in our decision," said Monica Guarnaschelli, director of brand marketing at 21c. "We were also impressed with Widen's level of service. They were very patient and helpful during decision process. We did dozens of demos, and there was great follow up and support the entire way."

The Widen Media Collective's integration with WordPress was also a big draw for 21c. As a pioneer in the hospitality industry, 21c re-launched its websites with responsive design in 2012, and the Widen/WordPress integration offers 21c an exciting opportunity to remain on the cusp of innovation.

The primary users of 21c's DAM system are the company's marketing and public relations teams along with their creative design firms and PR agencies, both of which have governed access to the image collections. The DAM system is also to be used by architects and designers who need access to past assets as well as the 21c museum team, which will rely on the system to organize and track exhibition photography. While the majority of assets are photos, 21c has found growing need to store videos and even architectural files.

"The team at 21c Museum Hotels was very aware of the need for proper digital asset management within the organization," said Craig Bollig, senior digital asset management advisor at Widen. "In our first conversation, the launch of a new website, an ever-expanding image library, and a team eager to organize were all motivation points to find a best-in-class system. They knew that to be successful in the short and long term, a robust yet simple to use system would be needed. After having a walkthrough of our features and even testing our system on their own, Widen was that easy choice."

About 21c Museum Hotels
21c Museum Hotels was founded by Laura Lee Brown and Steve Wilson, contemporary art collectors and preservationists who are committed to bringing works of art to the public through innovative exhibitions and programs that integrate contemporary art into daily life. These goals, coupled with their desire to participate in the revitalization of downtown Louisville led them to open the first property in 2006. Each 21c is unique in its site-specific art installations, architecture, design and restaurant. With a commitment to bringing works of art to the public that ignite the mind and fuel creativity, the museum exhibition space is integrated seamlessly throughout each property. There are opportunities to discover art around every corner of 21c: in the restaurant and bar, on the in-room Video Art Channel, in elevator lobbies, hallways, and even the public restrooms. 21c Museum presents a range of arts programming including thought-provoking solo and group exhibitions that reflect the global nature of art today, site-specific, commissioned installations as well as a variety of cultural programming. The galleries are open free of charge to the public 24 hours a day and 7 days a week. With the success of the Louisville property came opportunities for growth. 21c has opened hotels in Cincinnati, OH and Bentonville, AR and is under construction in Durham, NC. Plans have also been announced for Lexington, KY; Oklahoma City, OK and Kansas City, MO. For more information visit www.21cMuseumHotels.com.

About Widen Enterprises, Inc.
Based in Madison, Wisconsin, Widen has honed its more than 60 years of experience in premedia services and color management specifically for assisting customers with building brand equity and supporting consistent brand representation across print and Web communications. Through its inventive suite of Web-based digital asset management applications, Widen software services provide marketing networks with real-time, Web-based access to clients' digital asset libraries, subsequently eliminating manual search and file preparation time, costs related to replacing images and videos that cannot be located, and added costs for hardware, software and upgrades. For more information, visit: http://www.widen.com.

Contact:
Jake Athey
Marketing Manager
Widen Enterprises, Inc.
608-443-5472
Email Contact

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