Accenture Leads Outsourcing, Consulting, Integration for New Initiative
MINNEAPOLIS and PETERBOROUGH, England; March 21, 2005 – Thomas Cook UK has selected Navitaire’s Open Skies host reservation service to power its new online reservation system, which will offer low-cost seats on the company’s charter airline, Thomas Cook Airlines.
Navitaire, a wholly owned Accenture business which provides technology and business process solutions to the airline industry on an outsourced basis, will also host the reservation service for the airline. Financial terms of the five-year contract were not disclosed.
Thomas Cook has also chosen Accenture to provide integration and consulting services for the implementation phase of the reservation system. In addition to helping develop the initial business case for the new system, Accenture managed the development of the new flythomascook.com website and the launch of the airline direct reservation business.
The new website, flythomascook.com, is aimed at making Thomas Cook Airlines more visible and accessible for agents and consumers who are looking for flexible flights at competitive prices to 50 "sunshine" holiday destinations such as the Mediterranean, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Florida.
Through the agreement with Navitaire, Thomas Cook intends to reposition its airline from a cost-center, which largely manages and pays commissions on third-party reservations, to a revenue-generator, which sells directly to customers through an online channel.
"This is the next step in our strategy to make the best use of all sales channels," said Manny Fontenla-Novoa, chief executive of Thomas Cook UK. "With the capabilities of Navitaire’s Open Skies solution, Accenture’s proven expertise and Thomas Cook’s excellent reputation, we have an ideal opportunity to make significant market gains with an easy to use system offering very competitive prices."
"Open Skies has accommodated the growth needs of airlines across the industry, helping them to achieve high performance in their businesses," said John Dabkowski, Navitaire’s senior vice president of sales and marketing. "It should help Thomas Cook increase its competitive edge by reducing its cost of distribution and reservations."
"In an increasingly competitive market squeezed by new online entrants and no-frills airlines, this advance supports Thomas Cook’s strategy to maximize customer service and operational efficiency," said Alex Christou, a partner in Accenture’s Transportation & Travel Services practice.
About Thomas Cook
Thomas Cook Airlines is the UK’s second-largest leisure airline. It has a fleet of five Airbus A320s, two Airbus A 330s, 15 Boeing 757s and two Boeing 757-300s. Its headquarters is in Manchester with airport bases in Manchester, Gatwick, Glasgow, Newcastle, Birmingham, East Midlands and Stansted. During the summer months, the airline operates from a further eight UK airports. Each year it carries 2.7 million passengers to 52 holiday destinations.
Thomas Cook Airlines is part of Thomas Cook UK & Ireland, one of the UK’s largest travel companies with around 11,000 employees. Principal operations include 623 high street travel agencies, 121 separate bureaux de change, four call centres, Thomas Cook TV and thomascook.com one of the nations most popular UK travel websites. The company has more than 10 tour operating brands including Thomas Cook, JMC, Sunset, Thomas Cook Signature, Club 18-30 Cultura, Neilson, Blue Sky Holidays Direct, Sunworld Ireland and Style Holidays.
Navitaire provides reservation, direct distribution, revenue protection, operations recovery, decision-support and passenger revenue accounting technology to the airline industry through its hosted delivery model. The company’s worldwide customer base comprises more than 45 airlines, including six of the world’s 10 largest airlines, and such successful carriers as jetBlue, AirAsia, GOL Airlines, Ryanair, Continental Airlines and Air New Zealand. A wholly owned subsidiary of Accenture, Navitaire is headquartered in Minneapolis, with offices in Salt Lake City, Austin, Sydney, Manila and Prague. Its homepage is www.navitaire.com.
Accenture is a global management consulting, technology services and outsourcing company. Committed to delivering innovation, Accenture collaborates with its clients to help them become high-performance businesses and governments. With deep industry and business process expertise, broad global resources and a proven track record, Accenture can mobilize the right people, skills and technologies to help clients improve their performance. With more than 100,000 people in 48 countries, the company generated net revenues of US$13.67 billion for the fiscal year ended Aug. 31, 2004. Its home page is www.accenture.com.