SITA and IBM alliance good for channel

The aligning of SITA and IBM to provide systems integration, management and consultative services to airports will create some excellent opportunities for local channel partners to contribute to the complex process.

The partnership is striving to claim a large chunk of the annual $US1 billion market by providing the total integration of the technologies at airports spanning the globe.

Peter Lindgreen, global airports business manager, IBM travel and transportation, expects that the doubling of airport traffic in the next 12 years will place an enormous amount of pressure upon existing IT infrastructures. As a consequence, the IT airport industry is anticipating an annual growth rate of 15 per cent, a rate which SITA and IBM are hoping will keep them busy.

In order to respond to this, the duo are relying on their local presence and strategies to meet specific requirements whilst they can provide an overall neutral management approach. Ian Henderson. SITA's marketing manager, states that they will be searching for "best of breed partners" that spans across the industry's product and service range. "We will be looking for suppliers and service providers outside of SITA and IBM -- our aim is to be neutral and not rely on the IBM brand," stated Henderson.

Partnerships will be formed to provide solutions in areas such as passenger services, airport operations, electronic commerce, scheduling, baggage handling, finance and networking.

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