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Blackboard's Contactless Campus Card Reader Wins Coveted SESAMES Award

Top International Honor Marks "Unchallenged Seal of Approval in Innovation"

WASHINGTON, Dec. 16, 2010 /PRNewswire via COMTEX/ --

Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) today announced that its contactless campus card reader has won the coveted SESAMES Award, an international honor given to the most innovative products in digital security and smart technologies.

The SESAMES Awards represent an"unchallenged seal of approval in innovation and are regarded as global standards for card manufacturers and related industries." The award-winning reader supports contactless and magnetic strip reading capabilities, and is a key part of a complete contactless environment that supports a range of applications including building access, copy and laundry.

Earlier this year, Blackboard introduced the first Near Field Communication (NFC) contactless solution incorporating Sony FeliCa(TM) technology to U.S. colleges and universities. Already, nearly 50 institutions have adopted the platform to provide a safer and more convenient campus experience.

"We're honored to be recognized at the world's leading event for smart technologies and to be counted among such an elite group of innovative global technology leaders," said David Marr, President of Blackboard Transact. "This award is a reflection of the investment we've made in driving innovation across our platform we've been pleased to see our contactless solution be so well received by our clients."

Blackboard's contactless technology allows consumers to wave their card over a compatible reader at the point of acceptance, providing a high security smart card credential with near zero vulnerability points for identity theft and fraud. The reader supports full video playback, expanding the opportunity for institutions to send messages to consumers, along with a full-color interactive touch screen panel.

The announcement was made at CARTES & IDentification, the world's leading event for digital security and smart technologies held in Paris, France. Blackboard's MF4100 Contactless Multifunction Reader was selected by an international panel of experts from nearly 400 entries as a winner in the Banking/Retail/Loyalty category.

The SESAMES competition is open to innovative projects in 10 different categories and awards are given to global leaders including manufacturers, users, integrators and developers. Award categories include hardware; software; identification-ID card; IT security; transportation; banking/retail/loyalty; trusted Internet/authentication; mobility; e-transactions, and manufacturing and tests.

For more information about Blackboard Transact(TM) contactless solutions, please visit http://www.blackboard.com/contactless.

About Blackboard Inc.

Blackboard Inc. (Nasdaq: BBBB) is a global leader in enterprise technology and innovative solutions that improve the experience of millions of students and learners around the world every day. Blackboard's solutions allow thousands of higher education, K-12, professional, corporate, and government organizations to extend teaching and learning online, facilitate campus commerce and security, and communicate more effectively with their communities. Founded in 1997, Blackboard is headquartered in Washington, D.C., with offices in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia.

Any statements in this press release about future expectations, plans and prospects for Blackboard and other statements containing the words "believes," "anticipates," "plans," "expects," "will," and similar expressions, constitute forward-looking statements within the meaning of The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. Actual results may differ materially from those indicated by such forward-looking statements as a result of various important factors, including the factors discussed in the "Risk Factors" section of ourForm 10-Q filed on November 5, 2010 with the SEC. In addition, the forward-looking statements included in this press release represent the Company's views as of December 16, 2010. The Company anticipates that subsequent events and developments will cause the Company's views to change. However, while the Company may elect to update these forward-looking statements at some point in the future, the Company specifically disclaims any obligation to do so. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing the Company's views as of any date subsequent to December 16, 2010.

SOURCE Blackboard Inc.