10 August 2009

No Secret Any More - AC Cans Polaris PSS

The slow painful lack of progress with the Air Canada Reservations Project known as Polaris has come to a dead stop with AC writing off C$67 million. More importantly the depth of the work left to do was an astonishing C$40 million. This clearly indicates that the project was no where near done. Even if you discount a large amount of money for implementation, there is a clear indication that this project had some significant hills to climb to reach an "implementable" solution. Sadly ITA software is left without its anchor customer for what is a significant amount of their future revenue expectation.

And the big winner in all this?


Once again carrying all before it - Amadeus is fast becoming the only game in town for large scale reservations systems PSS. ....Well maybe not.... Amadeus has many problems of its own with the UAL implementation not making any visible progress. There are now some pretty good alternatives for large scale legacy airlines.

Mature solutions are from: Mercator (the core system of Emirates and several other airlines), itself an adaptation of the old Swissair Atrraxis system.
SabreSonic (as deployed at AA and many other carriers) the latest iteration of the venerable system from Sabre.
Horizon (although I am sure that I will get flamed by SITA who think its a brand new system)
EDS-Shares - Continental, Virgin Atlantic and US Airways are the biggest users.

There are some good solutions at the lower level of LCC and simple carrier level - such as Navitaire New Skies and Results or TikSystems (Amadeus's newest best friend).

Still trying to make headway are Unisys's Air Core, and IBS's solution.

The market for PSSs remains in churn with some big contracts still up for grabs. Lufthansa's exit from the market has left a hole. The cooperation between UA and CO should be interesting and we will be keeping an eye on this. They might yet decide to go to something different away from Altea. For sure there are a lot of people making trips to Chicago and Houston!

Actually there is one certified winner in this. IBM who managed to stay behind the scenes and retain the value of their relationship with AC. Couple this with the recent outsourcing of many of QF's IT functions to the Software and Services Giant and the boys in Armonk must be smiling.

For the rest - stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

Professor ... your research is not correct. While TIK Systems is a good friend with Amadeus, they are also very friendly with Galileo, Sabre, Abacus and any other Airline System Provider. And the friendship dates back to 2005. You might want to recheck your sources.

Professor Sabena said...

For the record, I didn't claim exclusivity for Amadeus's relationship with Tiksystems - my editorial comment was that the company has a nice cozy relationship. Amadeus has been notoriously fickle in its relationships with other PSS vendors. My comment stands and needs no further embellishment.

Mike Peri said...

You should also look at the work that Radixx solutions is doing within the industry. They are changing the way in which airlines use a PSS to run the airline.