Airways New Zealand expects further deals after scoring a multi-million dollar contract with China for its Flight-Yield billing software.
Airways claims four to five deals pending across Asia and the Middle East, including one agreed verbally and one as a prefered supplier.
“There’s a conveyor belt of sales processes and I expect at least two more deals signed in the next 12 months,” general manager Bruce Heesterman says.
The product, launched in October 2006, claims to be the first fully-automated aeronautical charge calculation and billing package.
Heesterman says the deal with the Civil Aviation Administration of China is its biggest overseas deal so far and is worth “in the millions”.
Flight-Yield is already used by Airways New Zealand and was a Computerworld Excellence Award Supreme winner in 2007.
Heesterman says the system is special due to its “calculation engine” which can clean and de-duplicate data. When an aircraft flies it can appear on several operating systems, but Flight-Yield can unscramble the data, producing automatic bills.
“We haven’t seen anything like it as sophisticated,” he says.
Flight-Yield lets users automatically retrieve details from an air traffic management system and apply the appropriate charging policy for each air traffic control service provided for each flight. Using such flight and charging information, it can then calculate the correct fee for every flight by each airline operator and produce an invoice.
Flight-Yield will provide full billing functionality for China’s entire air navigation services charges, airport fees, Civil Aviation Fund policy and airport services charges.
Once operational, Flight-Yield will collect and process China’s aviation data from its five regional air traffic management bureaus, over 40 air traffic control centres, 150 domestic airports and billing some 300 airlines.
China is already a large and fast-growing market, with 300,000 flight movements a month and double-digit annual traffic growth.
Heesterman says Airways already has “a relationship” with China on a variety of engineering and training projects. The only other overseas user of Flight-Yield is Papua New Guinea.
Airways has ten software developers working on Flight-Yield, supplemented by contractors. It seeks up to four people to help in support sales and implementation support, with the product expected to evolve over the years due to customer input.
Airways also employs developers for its tower simulator and radar training products.