· SJ to extend its distribution strategy through the offline and online travel agency solutions benefiting from the multi-channel capabilities of the Amadeus’ Global Rail Sales Platform
· Contract signing follows several recent landmark partnership deals agreed between Amadeus Rail and other leading rail operators such as Trenitalia and SNCF
Madrid, Spain, 30 November 2012:SJ, the largest rail operator in Sweden, and Amadeus, a leading technology partner for the global travel industry, today announce that they have agreed an extension of their content agreement and a commercial partnership in order to distribute SJ’s content through additional channels integrated into Amadeus’ Global Rail Sales Platform, the company’s rail-specific distribution service.
The agreement, which will see SJ content distributed for the first time through the offline and online travel agency channels using Agent Track and Web Services Track, will enable SJ to deliver against a more efficient domestic and international distribution strategy. Additionally, SJ will continue to be distributed through Amadeus e-Travel Management, Amadeus’ solution to distribute rail content though the corporate and travel management companies (TMC) channel, a self-booking tool widely used by corporations in Scandinavia.
By offering integration into standard travel agency processes, travel agents will be able to manage SJ bookings from end-to-end, maximising travel sellers’ productivity and increasing booking volumes in tandem. The solution will be delivered in a phased approach with pilot planned to begin at the beginning of 2013 with a driver TMC.
This is the first major integration of Scandinavian content and follows similar agreements with other major European railway providers. For travel agents this means they will have the option to book other high-speed rail providers alongside SJ content, making rail a genuine alternative to flying on some routes. For rail providers, the agreement will mean greater reach and therefore increased domestic and international sales opportunities.
European travellers are increasingly choosing to travel by train for both business and leisure. However, up until the launch of Amadeus Global Rail Sales Platform, there has been no efficient or unified way for travel agents to book rail content from different rail providers, since there has been no standardisation in terms of processes or interfaces.
Thomas Drexler, Head of Amadeus Rail, said: “This is yet another important step towards offering both a global platform and a multi-provider solution for effective rail distribution. With this in mind we are delighted that SJ has decided to partner with Amadeus by integrating SJ’s full content into Agent Track and Web Services Track. Travel sellers will have access to all fares and all origins and destinations worldwide. Moreover, SJ’s international sales in 2011 alone represented a little less than 2% of SJ’s total sales, illustrating that the commercial opportunity for both SJ and Amadeus is clearly huge.”
Thomas Mann, Head of Distribution, SJ states: “This agreement offers not only a clear opportunity for SJ but in parallel means that there will be a more open and more transparent competitive landscape for the industry. Certainly this agreement will lead to an increase in demand for rail as a viable and practical mode of transport, as it becomes a new and modern solution to address the needs of the 21st century traveller.”
A recent survey carried out by Amadeus found that almost 60 per cent of those surveyed indicated that they would like to be able to reserve “connecting rail travel and other modes of transport” (i.e. one ticket for every transport mode taken on one journey) in advance of their journey. Of the countries surveyed, Sweden (71%), rated this option higher than any of the other services listed.
Amadeus is developing the first ever rail-dedicated GDS, bringing rail travel to a greater number of potential passengers through its extensive multi-channel sales network. The Amadeus Global Rail Sales Platform provides availability, booking and ticketing capabilities to both travel sellers (travel agencies, online travel agencies and corporations) and railways’ direct sales channels. To date, SNCF, Eurostar, Thalys, Lyria, TrenItalia and SJ have selected Amadeus as their global, multichannel distribution partner and we are looking to integrate more major railways in the near future to Amadeus Global Sales Platform.
Amadeus Rail is the business arm dedicated to serving the needs of railway companies around the world, distributing content of over 100 railways, including Deutsche Bahn and Renfe, and providing IT services. Amadeus Rail employs over 250 rail experts in 5 competence centres (Nice, Bad Homburg, Sydney, Toronto and Madrid). For more information, please visit www.amadeusrail.net .
– Ends –
Notes to the editors:
About SJ Swedish Rail
Every day, 100,000 people travel with SJ, the largest train operator in Sweden. Just over 4,000 employees work to ensure that journeys by SJ trains are safe, reliable, comfortable and convenient. Every day, SJ operates 600 departures and traffics 160 stations, of which approximately ten are abroad, from Copenhagen to Narvik. In Sweden, all journeys by SJ trains carry the Good Environmental Choice label. SJ's turnover amounted to SEK 8 billion in 2011. SJ also sells tickets to events and experiences throughout Sweden, and offers hotel accommodation plus taxi travel to and from stations.
Amadeus is a leading transaction processor and provider of advanced technology solutions for the global travel and tourism industry.
Customer groups include travel providers (e.g. airlines, hotels, rail, ferries, etc.), travel sellers (travel agencies and websites), and travel buyers (corporations and individual travellers).
The group operates a transaction-based business model and processed more than 947 million billable travel transactions in 2011.
Amadeus has central sites in Madrid (corporate headquarters), Nice (development) and Erding (operations – data processing centre) and regional offices in Miami, Buenos Aires, Bangkok and Dubai. At a market level, Amadeus maintains customer operations through 73 local Amadeus Commercial Organisations covering 195 countries.
Amadeus is listed on the Madrid, Barcelona, Bilbao and Valencia stock exchanges and trades under the symbol “AMS.MC”. It is a component of the IBEX 35, STOXX Europe 600 Index, and the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI).
For the year ended December 31, 2011 the company reported like-for-like revenues of €2,712 million and EBITDA of €1,039 million. The Amadeus group employs around 10,000 people worldwide, with 123 nationalities represented at the central offices.
Telephone: +34 91 582 0160
Fax: +34 91 582 0188