British Airways has begun a major move towards use of the Internet Protocol (IP), signing a five-year $250 million contract for SITA to provide it with an IP-based global network infrastructure.

The development will allow BA to add new systems on the IP network rather than on existing mainframe-based infrastructure. Leo Dowling, SITA marketing director in northern Europe, says that the IP contract, the largest it has yet won from an airline, is part of a broad move by the industry towards e-commerce. One of the key aspects of the SITA system, he adds, is that it provides secure access.

The new system will provide BA staff with access to applications such as reservations, sales information and revenue management. SITA also provided BA with its Catering On-line Extranet system late last year. This web-based catering management system will be integrated with the new IP system.

Source: Airline Business