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CodeGen deal marks demise of 'outmoded' viewdata
by Phil Davies / Travolution / November 29, 2012

Cosmos Holidays, Avro and somewhere2stay are to withdraw distribution from "outmoded" viewdata. The tour operating division of the Monarch Group is to introduce the TravelBox flexible booking platform and trade web portal early next year.

Technology partner CodeGen is to implement the TravelBox solution within Cosmos and its related brands. The new distribution platform is seen as a core feature of a broader business transformation programme being carried out within Cosmos.

This is intended to modernise and bring further efficiencies into the division, and to improve the technology which underpins buying, inventory management and the online customer booking path, according to the company. The target date for completion of the initial phase is early 2013 to coincide with the peak booking period. Cosmos, Avro and somewhere2stay will then cease to distribute their products via the outmoded viewdata environment, a group statement said.

Cosmos Holidays managing director Hugh Morgan said: "The industry has for many years been talking about the need to move from legacy systems to more flexible and dynamic reservation solutions.

"We are arguably the largest scale operator in the UK to take this step, and we will therefore ensure that we work closely with all major technology providers and agents to ensure that our products can be made available to them both dynamically and in real-time, either through their existing booking platform or via our new trade portal.

"Consumers continue to demand both traditional and dynamically-packaged holiday product and our new platform will support the industry in delivering both product types.

"This new initiative will, at the same time, enable our trusted holiday brands to operate with the speed and agility of an OTA whilst offering the service, support and authority of a long-standing and respected tour operator.

"We see this as a core distinguishing feature of the Cosmos Holidays business model and one which puts the customer first." He described the initiative as demonstrating the ambition of Monarch and its shareholder to "significantly increase the scale of our leading travel group across a full suite of holiday products".

Morgan added: "The enabling technology in partnership with CodeGen will transform the breadth of our product offering, allowing us to work with a much wider range of suppliers, and significantly increase our speed to market. "The new TravelBox platform will benefit our suppliers and customers by ensuring that our business continues to meet their changing requirements."

The Monarch Group's tour operating businesses handle about 815,000 holidaymakers a year.


- Phil Davies Cosmos