AeroMechanical Services Ltd. and GuestLogix Inc. announced they have entered into an agreement under which they will jointly sell their airline technology solutions to enable airline customers to process real-time credit and debit card transactions during flights.
The joint sales agreement lays the foundation for the future integration of GuestLogix’ onboard retail transaction platform with AMA’s real-time global connectivity solutions for airlines. With integration complete, customers will be able to validate and process credit and debit card transactions in real time, while in-flight. This will enable airlines to sell higher valued products and services onboard while reducing credit card fraud risk and offering more merchandising variety to enhance the passenger experience.
Bill Tempany, CEO of AMA, stated: “This is an excellent example of the additional services we can offer our global carriers to leverage their existing air-to-ground data communications capability which we have provided. GuestLogix provides the world’s leading onboard retail technology that delivers new benefits by allowing our customers to easily engage in onboard retailing activities to create new and more profitable revenues.”
The two firms are focusing on the Asia Pacific region where AMA has customers currently and GuestLogix has established its sales and support presence. The GuestLogix onboard Point-of-Sale handhelds have recently received certification from China Unionpay, the bankcard association established under the approval of the State Council and the People’s Republic of China, to facilitate credit card sales onboard flights throughout China and other regions.
Tom Douramakos, President and CEO of GuestLogix, said: “We are pleased to be partnering with AMA to take advantage of our real-time transaction processing capability and local country certification for credit card payments. Onboard retailing, in the form of duty-free and catalog shopping, is very prevalent on Asian airlines, resulting in a much higher average value of in-flight sales compared to other regions. Low cost airlines are also becoming prominent where passengers pay for a la carte services. With continued projected growth in passenger trips in the region, Asia Pacific has become strategic for our long-term growth and we look forward to working with AMA to deliver new value to airline customers in the region.”
Geneva-based International Air Transport Association had estimated in December the industry would lose US$2.5 billion in 2009. Asia-Pacific carriers will continue to be hardest hit by global economic turmoil and are expected to post losses of US$1.7 billion, against the earlier forecast loss of US$1.1 billion in 2009.
While this forecast appears to be hitting bottom, airline manufacturers have become optimistic about the region’s long-term prospects. According to Boeing, the Asia Pacific region will be the world’s largest aviation market over the next 20 years. The area currently accounts for more than 8,300 flights and 1.2 million passengers daily.
Theodore is the Co-Founder and Managing Editor of TravelDailyNews Media Network; his responsibilities include business development and planning for TravelDailyNews long-term opportunities.