A joint venture company, Sabre Israel Travel Technologies Ltd., is being formed by Sabre and EL AL Israel Airlines to market a comprehensive travel distribution system and technology services to travel agencies in Israel.
Under the 10-year agreement between the two companies, Sabre Israel plans to migrate the over 600 travel agencies in Israel that use EL AL`s Carmel reservations system to a direct connection to the Sabre GDS product platform. This connection will be established using an IP network. Israeli travel agencies will continue to access Carmel to make bookings on the national carrier, but after the deal closes and migration to the new system is in place, they will be able to access other airlines directly through Sabre - streamlining the booking process.
Sabre Israel will ultimately provide travel agencies in Israel with:
* improved efficiency through direct links to the inventory of travel providers around the world
* a range of technology solutions and services to help them streamline operations, improve productivity and reduce costs
* access to the Sabre GDS and the Carmel EL AL reservations system from a single desktop
* access to a more comprehensive range of local travel-related content important to the Israeli market
* access to local car and hotel reservations in Europe and Israel The new agreement replaces and expands on a contract signed in 1995 between Sabre and EL AL, under which the carrier provided a limited distribution product to travel agencies in Israel. Through this arrangement travel agencies have used EL AL`s Carmel reservations system to reserve and ticket flights on the carrier, while linking from Carmel to Sabre to make bookings on other airlines.
Financial terms were not disclosed. The joint venture is subject to customary closing conditions, and is expected be completed following the customary 90-day government approval process.