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Published on Thursday, August 9, 2007

Sabre and Amadeus seek joint venture approval

Sabre Holdings and Amadeus have filed with the European Commission for antitrust approval to create a joint venture concentrating on non-air items.

The rival Global Distribution System companies said the initiative would provide “secure, automated payment processing, clearing and reconciliation solutions” to the global travel industry.

“The intent of the joint venture is to establish an industry standard solution to improve and better meet the requirements of the travel industry with payment efficiencies, increased automation, and improved interoperability,” a statement said.

“The joint venture plans to focus on the non-air segments of the industry such as hotels, cruise, tour, car and rail.

“The joint venture will integrate the existing financial instruments already used by the travel industry into a best-in-class multi-channel, multi-GDS platform, which will allow travel industry players to effectively manage all aspects of their payment needs in a flexible, easy-to-use solution.”

No further details were given, with both companies saying more information on the joint venture solution will be available upon approval, but no timetable was indicated.

The move comes as competitor GDSs Galileo and Worldspan conclude merger arrangements.

by Phil Davies

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  • GDS Selling Direct to Consumers

    Well folks when legislation prohibits all GDS systems from directly selling to consumers maybe we would all be in a equal field. Let the GDS build the super technology highway where the carpool lane is for High Occupancy GDS Medium. I'm all for technology advancement when we are sure it is in the "best interest" of the travel agency. You decide...

    By Alan Delanoza, Wednesday, October 10, 2007

  • Is this a first shot at a transatlantic duopoly?

    Although the details are very sketchy my initial reaction is that this has the potential of being a highly anti-competitive move by the two dominant GDS. Even if the starting point is non-air transactions this clearly could be a pre-cursor to providing the same service to airlines (a much tougher argument for the two GDS to fight at the EU, especially as they are looking to real the EU legislation controlling GDS activity). Now although I agree that a more cost efficient industry service for handling airline payments would be of huge benefit to the industry I do not believe two private owned companies should run this, especially as this would clearly give each a competitive advanatage irresepective of how 'neutral' or 'multi-GDS they claim they want it to be. Will watch with interest how this story unfolds. Trevor Heley

    By Trevor Heley, Wednesday, August 8, 2007

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