Three Leading Airlines Join IBS' Next Generation Cargo Initiative

Trivandrum – Aug 24, 2005: Air New Zealand Cargo, Gulf Air and South African Airways Cargo have joined the Core Group of Influence (CGI) Forum, set up by IBS Software Services, to participate in the development of a next generation air cargo and logistics management system, “iCargo”.

IBS Software Services, a global IT Company providing world-class solutions to the Travel Transportation and Logistics (TTL) industry, embarked on this multimillion dollar mega initiative to build iCargo in 2002. The system is a new generation design using the latest web-based tools and multi-tiered architecture which will be a catalyst for change for cargo carriers within the logistics industry.

IBS together with Air New Zealand Cargo, Gulf Air and South African Airways Cargo have formed the CGI Forum to influence and validate the processes and functionality of iCargo to address the current and future requirements of the industry.

Chairman and Managing Director of IBS, Mr. V K Mathews said, “This is an exciting initiative that will help reshape the air cargo business. The core processes of the airline business, both passenger and cargo, have been under the clutches of legacy systems that were developed over the last 40 years. We are proud that we have been able to give leadership to this change through initiatives such as iCargo and iRes, a similar initiative for a new-generation passenger services system that IBS is developing in partnership with Cendant TDS”.

Mr. Mathews stated, “I am delighted to welcome the airlines which will make up the Core Group of Influence. Air New Zealand Cargo, Gulf Air and South African Airways Cargo are important members of the CGI Forum because of their innovative thinking and leadership within the air cargo industry and their global positioning”.

Mr. Patrick Dlamini, General Manager of SAA Cargo had this to say: “South African Airways Cargo is excited in being a member of the Core Group of Influence and that we have been given the opportunity to participate in the development of the new iCargo system. SAA has always strived to implement the latest technology available, to provide its customers with the best possible service. When IBS approached SAA, the Management team was unanimous in its decision to participate. The team is eagerly anticipating the first release and the prospects of the new system enabling our remote sites to have access with minimal investments”.

He further added, “The process followed by IBS is very professional and leaves very little room for misinterpretation of the airline’s requirements. IBS has a vast knowledge base of the cargo industry and logistical requirements of both manufacturer and consumer. We at SAA Cargo will provide IBS with full support in their endeavor of establishing a world class cargo solution.”

Mr. Paul Reid, Air New Zealand Cargo’s General Manager said “Air New Zealand Cargo is excited about the opportunity to work with IBS on the project. It will clearly define our future IT systems roadmap and by working with a number of airlines, we will ensure that an industry solution is developed”.

Mr. Ali Murtada, Gulf Air’s Vice President - Business Units, said, “The cargo Information Technology (IT) industry is evolving rapidly and we are delighted to be part of such an evolution. IBS’ iCargo will undoubtedly re-shape the traditional cargo IT platforms into a robust technology that introduces an end-to-end integration across the entire cargo chain. It is Gulf Air’s strategy to be part of the next generation technology platforms to ensure that our cargo business grows on a sound IT foundation”.

iCargo is being developed as an integrated, multi-hosting system which will comprehensively address cargo reservations, capacity control, rating, load planning, cargo terminal operations and freight forwarding requirements of cargo carrying airlines.

iCargo will be developed and released to the market in stages, adding new functionality incrementally, so as to evolve as a full-fledged cargo and logistics management system, supporting the entire logistics supply chain from shipper to consignee The first market release of iCargo will be in December 2005.

The value proposition of iCargo is that it will help airlines, ground handlers and freight forwarders to enhance cargo business profitability, accommodate changing customer service demands and respond quickly and effectively to changing market conditions and business situations, leveraging new generation technologies.

iCargo is envisioned to be the leading cargo and logistics management system for the air transportation industry, comprehensively and seamlessly addressing the requirements of all agencies in the logistics chain, using state-of-the-art technologies. The product design supports innovative business models and enables operators to respond efficiently to changing customer needs. The product will be an inevitable and viable migration option from the current legacy systems.