Convio Adds Fortune 500 Veteran to Executive Team to Further Build Company's Position as Leading Internet Software and Services Provider for Nonprofits

AUSTIN, Texas, July 1, 2003 (PRIMEZONE) -- Convio, Inc. -- the company that has pioneered online Constituent Relationship Management (eCRM) solutions for the nonprofit sector -- today announced expansion of its executive team to include Fortune 500 technology veteran, Gene Austin. Austin, who has built and/or led business units at Dell Computer Corporation and BMC Software, and also headed marketing and sales for a successful start-up, will serve as Convio's Chief Executive Officer (CEO) and join Convio's board of directors.

Vinay Bhagat, who has been CEO since founding Convio in April 1999, now will serve as Chairman of the Board of Directors and Chief Strategy Officer, continuing to play a major role in client development, building partner relationships, and formulating corporate and product strategy. Additionally, Bhagat, a recognized thought leader for the nonprofit sector, will continue to speak at conferences and publish articles to promote use of the Internet for more effective fundraising, marketing, advocacy, event management, communications and management of constituent relationships.

"Gene is the perfect addition to the Convio team as we enter the next phase in our company's evolution as the leading Internet technology provider for nonprofits," said Vinay Bhagat. "We experienced tremendous growth in 2002 and it's continuing in 2003 as nonprofits recognize the increasing importance of incorporating the Internet into fundraising, marketing and overall management of constituent relationships. Gene's breadth of experience and success in growing world-class businesses from young ventures to major units at global technology companies will help take Convio to the next level and beyond. By continuing to build an even stronger company, we'll be even better able to continue helping nonprofits embrace and utilize the Internet -- key for optimizing efficiency and advancing mission fulfillment."

Austin is highly experienced in scaling technology companies and very knowledgeable about the application service provider (ASP) model upon which Convio is based. Most recently, Austin was at BMC Software, serving as Vice President and General Manager of Enterprise Data Management, a $600 million business unit. Prior to BMC, Austin worked at Dell as Vice-President and General Manager of Internet Servers. Before Dell, Austin was Senior Vice-President of Sales and Marketing at, an Internet recruiting company where the growth he drove enabled the company to go public in 1999.

"Like the other technology businesses I have helped grow, Convio has all the elements that drive exponential growth -- the market's most comprehensive, powerful product, a fantastic team delivering superior customer service and clients generating significant results," said Gene Austin. "I am thrilled to join the company, not only because it's so well-positioned for continuing success, but also it's a unique opportunity to help nonprofits operate more effectively through the use of advanced Internet technology."

Austin joins Convio at a time when the company's steady growth is accelerating. Already recognized as the leading provider of Internet solutions for nonprofits, Convio is positioning itself to capture an even larger share of the $1.3 trillion (total of operating expenditures) nonprofit market which includes more than one million entities with the 501(C) tax-exempt status. In 2002, Convio expanded its business by 180 percent. Convio now serves more than 120 organizations, including many of the nation's most prominent and influential nonprofits, in virtually all segments of the sector. Among Convio's clients are Easter Seals, Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), American Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (ASPCA), The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and Georgetown University.

"Convio has built a strong business and now is scaling to meet increasing market demand," said Ross Cockrell, a Venture Partner with Austin Ventures and a member of Convio's Board of Directors. "Gene will be able to focus full time on managing the company's growth to capture an even larger share of the marketplace it now dominates. Meanwhile, Vinay will continue to provide vision as well as thought and strategy leadership to both Convio and the philanthropic world."

About Convio

Convio is the leading online Constituent Relationship Management (eCRM) company serving the nonprofit sector. Convio provides Internet software and services that help organizations attract, motivate and retain constituents for fundraising, advocacy and other forms of support. Convio's product suite includes modules for Web content management, email marketing, general fundraising and membership, advocacy, special events, volunteer fundraising and also online directories and surveys. The Convio platform automatically shares data among all product modules and with offline databases, giving nonprofits a unified and more complete view of each constituent so staff can conduct personalized and targeted marketing. Convio also offers consulting services to help nonprofits adopt online marketing best practices.

In addition to Easter Seals, MADD, ASPCA, The Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation and Georgetown University, Convio's clients include American Diabetes Association, Carnegie Museums of Pittsburgh, National Trust For Historic Preservation, KCET Community Television of Southern California, the University of Texas at Austin's alumni association and the Y-ME National Breast Cancer Organization. For more information, please visit

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