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SITA’s IP telephony to boost Saudia services



SITA, the global air transport IT and communications specialist, has installed IP telephony across Saudia’s international network, providing Saudi Arabia’s leading airline with significant savings by eliminating international toll calls among its domestic offices and 250 international offices around the world. The new solution is part of the International Managed Converged Advanced Network programme (IMCAN), a multi-million dollar, five-year strategic project run by the airline and SITA to implement a complete IP-based IT infrastructure in all Saudia offices globally.

To date, the airline’s offices in Europe, North America, South Asia, Asia-Pacific, parts of the Middle East and its domestic offices in Saudi Arabia are all connected to each other over the SITA IP network. This means international calls among the airline’s offices no longer rely on public networks, which typically are more costly.

Muhammad Al-Bakri, VP Information Technology at Saudia said: “The new voice-over-IP solution represents a major milestone in the IMCAN program, and it helps us remove substantial costs from our business.”

The IMCAN program replaced more than 300 legacy leased lines and 5,000 desktops, printers and servers at 100 airports and city offices in 55 countries. One of the program’s key objectives is to provide a platform that will enable Saudia to implement a wide range of business critical applications. This will include a new passenger management system, which will allow Saudia to provide passengers with more mobility services, such as remote check-in, mobile boarding passes and self-boarding.

Ibrahim Saleh, SITA’s VP Sales for Middle East and Turkey, said: “Adding voice-over-IP is a natural evolution for Saudia. By combining voice with the IP connectivity on an international scale the airline is leveraging the strength of converged networks and benefiting from significant cost savings. This major project also highlights SITA’s expertise in providing global services, which are specifically designed for the air transport industry.”

Saudia and SITA are committed to continuously improving the services portfolio provided by IMCAN to retain the achieved level of user experience and to adopt new technologies based on mobility and unified communications.

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